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NBA GMs vote Anthony Davis as second-most likely to win MVP, second-best power forward and sixth-best defender in NBA

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It would appear Lakers big man Anthony Davis might be underrated as a defender.

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Golden State Warriors v Los Angeles Lakers Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images

The NBA’s annual general manager survey, as conducted by John Schuhmann of NBA.com, is now out and, as you’d imagine, the Los Angeles Lakers are featured quite frequently — especially Anthony Davis. In total, Davis received votes for eight different categories this year, and that doesn’t include him being one of the main reasons that the Lakers received votes as a team.

To start, Davis received 10% of the votes to win this year’s MVP, tied with Steph Curry and Kawhi Leonard, but pretty far behind Giannis Antetokounmpo, the heavy favorite at 52%. It makes sense that Antetokounmpo would receive so many of the votes seeing as won last year at only 24 years old. But having seen how the Lakers are utilizing Davis and his impact on both sides of the court, it wouldn’t shock anyone if he walked away with the trophy this year, either.

Giannis and Davis were then joined by Luka Doncic as the players GMs would most like to sign to start a franchise, though, again, Davis tied for a distant second place. It’s wild to think of how much young talent the NBA has right now, and at just 26 years old, Davis is about to enter his prime.

GMs were then asked about the league’s best at each position, and Davis made an appearance at both the power forward and center spots. He, Antetokounmpo and LeBron James were the only players to receive votes at multiple positions.

Things got weird when GMs were asked about the moves made this summer, though.

First, the Lakers — who, you know, acquired Anthony effing Davis — didn’t receive any votes for which team made the best overall moves this offseason. Nope, the team that did receive 11% of the votes in that respect was the team that traded him away. Though it makes a little more sense when you take into account the acquisition of Zion Williamson, because drafting him was obviously a really tough call.

With all that said, Davis did receive 21% of the vote for which single player will make the biggest impact, behind Leonard (67%).

Defensively, Davis was once against behind Leonard (as well as Rudy Gobert, Draymond Green, Giannis and Paul George) when GMs gave their answers for the league’s best defender. It does highlight how loaded the NBA is, but sixth does feel pretty low — especially if you ask Frank Vogel.

Gobert racked up 93% of the votes on the NBA’s best interior defender, with Davis and Joel Embiid both also receiving votes. Again, not to say Gobert isn’t great — he absolutely is — but we’ve seen multiple postseasons where he’s been played off the floor because of his holes on the perimeter. This has never been the case with Davis, especially when he slides down to the five.

Overall, it’s hard to argue that Davis didn’t receive enough praise throughout this survey. The NBA is absolutely loaded and Davis is coming off a down year thanks to how things played out last year in New Orleans. But if he really wants to, he could use a lot of this as motivation, especially on the defensive side of the ball. Should he do that, Lakers fans can could be in for an incredible year from their latest historically great big man, and Davis will rank a lot higher in a lot of these categories next year.

For more Lakers talk, subscribe to the Silver Screen and Roll podcast feed on iTunes, Spotify, Stitcher or Google Podcasts. Yell at the author on Twitter @AnthonyIrwinLA.