Blake Griffin, Jamal Crawford give New Orleans’ Anthony Davis rave reviews

first_imgPLAYA VISTA — Anthony Davis of the New Orleans Pelicans has become an absolute beast of a power forward. The third-year player out Kentucky is averaging 25.2 points, second in the NBA. He’s averaging 3.06 blocks, first in the league. He’s also coming up with 2.29 steals per game, also second in the association.Let’s not forget rebounding. He’s pulling down 11.5 per game, sixth in the NBA.Other than all that, he’s not doing a thing.Davis and the Pelicans (8-9) on Saturday will visit Staples Center to take on the Clippers (13-5) at 7:30 p.m. At practice Friday, Clippers power forward Blake Griffin was asked what problems Davis presents, and his response was not surprising. “A lot,” Griffin said. “I mean, he’s so versatile offensively and defensively he’s a force as well. So it’s going to be a team thing and we just have to be aggressive with them and execute our game plan and take the fight to them.”Davis spent just one season at Kentucky before declaring for the 2012 NBA draft. He was selected first overall by the Pelicans, but before he got started with them he spent part of the summer of 2012 helping Team USA win a gold medal in the Olympic Games in London.Clippers sixth-man Jamal Crawford intimated that experience had to have helped Davis mature faster in the NBA.“He’s such a good player, he’s a good all-around player,” Crawford said of Davis, who is 6-foot-10 and about 220 pounds. “He does it on both ends of the floor and he’s having a monster season. It’s weird, when you watch guys that go with the USA to the Olympics and then come back to their season, they come back better prepared, more confident.“I think if you look at him, Steph Curry, Klay Thompson, James Harden, all those guys, DeMarcus Cousins; they’ve all had great seasons. He (Davis) has gotten better and better. He’s gotten more aggressive — his shot attempts have gone up. He’s doing the same things defensively, obviously, the blocks and the steals and the rebounds. He’s one of the best players in the league.” Check out this example of one of Davis’ lines. In Thursday’s 112-85 loss at Golden State, Davis went for 30 points on 14-of-19 shooting. He also had 15 rebounds, three blocks, three assists and two steals. With all that, the 21-year-old had just two turnovers.Father vs. sonWith the Pelicans in town, that means Clippers coach Doc Rivers will be going against his son, Austin. The younger Rivers is in his third season in the league. A 6-4 shooting guard, he’s part of the regular rotation and is averaging 6.6 points and 2.2 assists in 21.8 minutes off the bench.Coach Rivers on Friday was asked his thoughts about coaching against his son. He suddenly wore just a bit of a pained expression.“Well, it is what it is,” said Doc Rivers, whose team has won six consecutive games and eight of nine. “It’s not anything I think anyone enjoys doing. He wants to win, I want to win and, you know, it’s tough. It’s tough for a parent. I never thought it would be. I thought it would be a lot of fun.”Rivers found out during his final season coaching the Boston Celtics — his son’s rookie year with New Orleans — that was not the case.“In Boston, when we did it the first time, I realized it’s really not a lot of fun,” Rivers said.So, Rivers was asked, who does the Rivers family root for when father and son collide?“Oh, for my son,” Rivers said, managing a laugh. “Yeah, that’s no doubt. The whole family, in that regard.”Even the coach himself?“No,” he said, smiling wickedly.center_img Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Errorlast_img

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