The New Orleans Pelicans, along with their new name and uniforms, have a promising future ahead of them with 2012-2013 first overall pick Anthony Davis. Although he was shadowed by the exciting rookie point guard Damian Lillard over in Portland, Davis had a really good first year in the NBA
The 6-foot-10 big man averaged 13.5 points, 8.2 rebounds, and 1.8 blocks in less then 29 minutes a game. He did this shooting a really solid 52 percent from the field and 75 percent on his free throws. More importantly he showed an understanding of how to defend and has an incredible ability to protect the rim. Not to mention he also led all rookies in PER with an impressive mark of 21.7.
Davis is somewhat of an oddity. He’s tall and has an incredibly long wingspan of 7-foot-5.5 but also plays somewhat like a guard. He has shown the ability to dribble, shoot and pass. He didn’t do any of these things particularly well last season but showed the signs of those one day being part of his offensive game.
One of the best things about Davis is the fact that he is only 20 years-old. He has a lot of room for improvement and seems to be in the right environment to grow. He is already a good defender and a decent scorer but can get so much better as his game matures.
As for this upcoming season his overall play should improve from last year and he should be able to help the Pelicans towards their goal of making the playoffs. He is versatile, can defend, and should be better offensively. Because of his size he will still have trouble defending low post scorers one on one, but other than that he will have a great sophomore season.
With an improved Pelicans roster it will be interesting to see how Davis plays on a good team. Playing with newly acquired Jrue Holiday and possibly a healthy Eric Gordan will allow Davis to excel. Being the roll man in a pick and roll with either of these players should be very successful. Davis is quick and exceptional at rolling to the rim for a possible alley-oop play.
On defense Davis will be the main focus. New Orleans has capable wing defenders, especially Al-Farouq Aminu. Their goal will be to funnel opposing guards into Davis making it hard for them to get a shot up over his long arms. Also when the defense breaks down Davis will be able to come in and help his teammates that get beat off the dribble.
In all Davis is a very important piece to this Pelicans roster, which is expected from an overall first draft pick. Though he has a lot of room for growth, he is ready to really contribute to a team fighting for a playoff spot. Even though New Orleans has brought in some good players like Holiday and Tyreke Evans, Davis is going to be the best player on the team.