After an outstanding performance by Anthony Davis which saw the Lakers get a 121-115 road win over the Cavaliers, Austin Reaves took the time to address AD’s critics.
Davis hasn’t had the most consistent start to the season, but put on a show in Cleveland where he recorded 32 points on 13-of-20 shooting, to go with 13 rebounds, three assists, two steals and three blocks in 38 minutes.
After the performance, Reaves stuck up for his teammate and explained how even when he doesn’t fill the stat sheet, he is contributing in ways casual basketball fans don’t even comprehend.
“Everybody’s quick to murder AD when he has an off night,” Reaves said of Davis, per ESPN’s Dave McMenamin. “He’s affecting the game more than what the average human is picking up on.”
The critics were quick to come at Davis after he scored only ten points in the Lakers’ loss to the Mavs on Wednesday.
This season so far, Davis has averaged his lowest points per game (22.1) since the 2020-21 season and his third-fewest since his rookie season in 2012-13.
Defensively, AD has been solid to start the 2023-24 season and is averaging the second-most blocks per game (2.9) of his career.
This is tied for the most in the league with Bucks big man Brook Lopez.
The 30-year-old has been dealing with a hip adductor injury that could be affecting his ability to score, but he has played in 16 of the Lakers’ 17 games.
In saying that, his teammate and almost 39-year-old LeBron James has also been dealing with a number of ailments, yet he is averaging 25.5 points per night.
Playing alongside one of the most prolific NBA players in history and having to fill his shoes one day is certainly a tall task that is likely to come with criticisms.