Lakers’ Anthony Davis reveals what he truly feels about playing center
Anthony Davis has been outspoken about his lack of desire to play the center position, something quickly reflected in the Los Angeles Lakers’ hurry to acquire Dwight Howard and bolster that spot upon DeMarcus Cousins’ torn ACL this summer.
The Brow admitted his reluctance to man the center spot and the toll it takes on his body to play that position the entire 82-game season, though he’s willing to do it if it’s what’s required to win:
“Nah, it’s true. I said it. But the thing is, it’s a long season and you want to be smart,” Davis told Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports. “Battling [centers] can wear on your body. So I think having JaVale [McGee] and having DeMarcus [Cousins] before he got hurt and now having Dwight [Howard] takes pressure off of me and allows me to play and withstand an 82-game season and going into the playoffs. But obviously, if we have to and we’re playing a big lineup where I’m at the five, then I’m willing to do it. I’m willing to do whatever it takes to win.”
Davis entered the league as a thin power forward, eventually bulking his way to 250 pounds over the years. Yet his muscle and athleticism advantages quickly go away when forced to defend hulking centers who can wear off his stamina when battling for position on the boards and during post-up situations.
Defending 3-point shooters also becomes increasingly difficult from that position, as his task to pull down rebounds and defend the paint can at times make him late for closeouts and perimeter rotations.
The acquisition of Howard coupled with JaVale McGee’s presence should ease that worry, though, as he will only need to fill in at that position when absolutely necessary.