Stephen A. Smith takes shot at Anthony Davis’ availability after Lakers star shows interest in 2024 Olympics

Jesse Cinquini
3 Min Read

Los Angeles Lakers star big man Anthony Davis has reportedly expressed interest in representing Team USA at the 2024 Olympics. But at least one prominent sports media talking head doesn’t want to see Davis in the Olympics.

Stephen A. Smith spoke about the matter and explained his view.

Smith added that he doesn’t want to see Davis in “no damn international competition because that might be an excuse for him to miss another 10, 20 games.”

Davis, 30, was selected with the No. 1 overall pick in the 2012 NBA Draft following a tremendously successful one-season stint playing college basketball at the University of Kentucky. He averaged 14.2 points, 10.4 rebounds, 1.4 steals and a whopping 4.7 blocks per contest across 40 games played with the Wildcats during the 2011-12 season (all starts).

Those numbers were good enough for Davis to earn SEC Player of the Year honors as well as the John R. Wooden Award.

The big man’s contributions led to a whole lot of wins for the Wildcats. They finished the season with a remarkable 38-2 record and won the NCAA title. The Wildcats beat the University of Kansas in the title game by a final score of 67-59. Davis admittedly struggled to score in the win, as he scored just six points, but he did have 16 rebounds and six blocks.

Davis has played for two teams — the New Orleans Pelicans and Lakers — across his 11 seasons in the NBA. He averaged 25.9 points, 12.5 rebounds, 2.6 assists and 2.0 blocks per game in 56 games played with the storied Lakers franchise during the 2022-23 regular season (54 starts).

The 30-year-old carried over his excellent play during the 2022-23 regular season into the 2023 postseason. Davis averaged 22.6 points, 14.1 rebounds, 2.6 assists and 3.1 blocks per game in 16 playoff appearances.

Davis’ best series of the 2023 playoffs came in the Western Conference Finals against Nikola Jokic, Jamal Murray and the Denver Nuggets. He averaged 26.8 points, 14.0 rebounds, 2.3 assists and 2.8 blocks per game for the series. The big man’s heroics weren’t enough for the Lakers to beat the Nuggets, though, as Denver swept them in four games.

Smith’s concerns about Davis’ injury history are understandable, as he hasn’t played more than 62 regular season games in any of his seasons as a Laker. Here’s to hoping that Davis will be able to surpass this number in the 2023-24 regular season.

Share This Article
Jesse is a sports journalist with extensive experience covering the NBA. He has worked as a staff writer covering the Lakers’ dreaded rivals, the Boston Celtics, for SB Nation. He has also covered the New York Knicks for The Knicks Wall.