The Lakers picked up another big victory on an emotional night on Tuesday. Hosting the No. 2 seed Grizzlies and with Pau Gasol’s jersey being retired at halftime, the Lakers rode the back of another dominant Anthony Davis performance to earn a victory.
With LeBron James out, AD is once again putting on a superhero cape for the Lakers and powering the team to victories. After scoring 38 and 39 points in each of the last two games, Davis poured in 30 points with 22 rebounds against Memphis.
After the contest, head coach Darvin Ham revealed his new nickname for Davis, one that was both apropos and also corny as hell.
Mike Trudell: “Your thoughts on Davis tonight?”— Dave McMenamin (@mcten) March 8, 2023
Darvin Ham: “Wilt?”
Ham: “That’s my nickname for him, Wilt Davis”
Another 30-point, 20-rebound effort for Anthony “Wilt” Davis has the Lakers feeling good, apparently.
It may not quite be a Wilt-like effort because no one has ever had games like Wilt, but it was thoroughly dominant. With his 30-point, 22-rebound, 2-block effort on Tuesday, Davis because just the second player to achieve that stat line this season, the other being Ivica Zubac.
This season, only Giannis Antetokounmpo (3) has more 30-point, 20-rebound games than Davis’ two contests. Now, if you want some true context into Wilt, Tuesday was the eighth time in AD’s career he’s had at least 30 points and 22 rebounds. In the 3-point era, only five players have more games than Davis with Moses Malone leading all in that span with 42.
Wilt? He did it 417 times. Not a typo.
Obviously, Ham was a little tongue-in-cheek with his comment but Davis has been incredible in games without LeBron this season. It’s been frustrating to see them play so little with one another this year, but it’s also given Davis a chance to remind everyone just how damn good he can be.
It’s been imperative to keep the Lakers afloat and it’s been a joy to watch AD ascend to something resembling a small piece of Wilt status.
You can follow Jacob on Twitter at @JacobRude.