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LeBron James sees Anthony Davis as a Defensive Player of the Year candidate

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Anthony Davis set out a goal to be Defensive Player of the Year this season, and his Lakers teammate LeBron James thinks he’s on the right track.

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Oklahoma City Thunder v Los Angeles Lakers Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images

Anthony Davis has never won Defensive Player of the Year. He’s led the league in blocks three times in his seven-year career, made three All-Defensive teams and finished third in Defensive Player of the Year voting in 2018, but he’s never won it.

This season with the Los Angeles Lakers, Davis is hoping to finally win the award, and his superstar teammate LeBron James thinks he’s on track to do it. After the Lakers’ 112-107 win over the Oklahoma City Thunder on Tuesday — a game in which Davis added two blocks and seven rebounds — James said that he thinks Davis should be in the conversation for Defensive Player of the Year.

“We know how great AD is. It starts defensively. He’s right there right now as probably the Defensive Player of the Year if you just look at the numbers and what we’ve been able to do,” James said.

At this stage of the season, there are a handful of players that warrant some level of consideration for the Defensive Player of the Year, including Rudy Gobert, the reigning Defensive Player of the Year, and Giannis Antetokounmpo. However, there a few things Davis has working in his favor.

For starters, he leads the league in total blocks, having rejected 40 shots so far this season. The biggest thing he has going for him, though, is the fact that he’s arguably the best defensive player on one of the best defensive teams in the league. The Lakers are currently ranked second in defensive rating, but they’ve been first for most of the season and Davis has been a big part of that.

It’s far too early to be talking about awards that aren’t given out until June, but it’s notable that Davis is making ground on the goals he set for himself this season. Let’s hope he shows just as much progress on another goal he’s spoken about: Winning a championship in Los Angeles.

For more Lakers talk, subscribe to the Silver Screen and Roll podcast feed on iTunes, Spotify, Stitcher or Google Podcasts. You can follow this author on Twitter at @RadRivas.