Of the many talking points this season and in recent years, Anthony Davis and how much of a participant he is in the Lakers offense in the second half and fourth quarters. Throughout this season, Davis’ impact in the final frame has waned.
Wednesday served as a high point perhaps of the entire season in that regard, though, as AD dominated in the fourth quarter against Portland en route to a win, scoring 14 points on 5-7 shooting from the field, including even knocking down a 3-pointer in the period as well.
After the game, LeBron James shared his thoughts on how the team needs to approach getting AD the ball in the fourth quarter.
"He's too big time for our team not to have the ball in his hands," LeBron James on Anthony Davis in the 4th Q— Dan Woike (@DanWoikeSports) December 1, 2022
Even including Wednesday’s game, Davis is third on the team in fourth quarter field goal attempts at 53, trailing LeBron and Lonnie Walker IV. Russell Westbrook is only four shots behind him despite playing 17 total fewer minutes in fourth quarters.
Even in a vacuum, giving the ball to your best player more when the game matters most seems like a good gameplan. In this season, when AD is playing at an MVP level, giving him the ball as much as possible and riding his hot streak is the most logical gameplan.
How they go about doing it can be bandied about by smarter minds than myself, but putting the ball in the hands of your best players seems logical. For a Lakers team in desperate need of wins, relying on your elite players to deliver those wins needs to be the formula and that involves getting the ball in the hands of AD.