For the first time in his career, LA Lakers’ new star, Anthony Davis stepped on the floor of the NBA Finals and put up an incredible and dominant performance.
The 27-year-old big-man from Chicago, Illinois put up a hell of a show in Game 1 of the NBA Finals against the Miami Heat. He finished with 34 points, nine rebounds, five assists and three blocks while shooting 52.4% at the field and 50% from the three-point area.
Davis’ top-notch performance is not only great from him individually but he was also the big reason why they took Game 1 in a dominant fashion, 116-98.
The Brow’s 34-point debut performance will forever be remembered in Lakers history as it will go down as the third most points scored in an NBA Finals debut by a Laker, behind only Shaquille O’Neal, who scored 43 points in 2000, George Mikan, who scored 42 points in 1949 and tied with Elgin Baylor, who also had 34 points in the 1959 NBA Finals.
“It’s a great honor to be in the category with those guys and they’ve done so much for the game. They’re Hall of Famers and for me to come out and perform that way and be mentioned with those guys, especially, as a Laker,” Davis said.
“Those guys are the once I watched films on, that I idolized and now to say that I’m in the category is definitely and honor for me and what makes it even more is winning it, that’s a great honor but I also want to be mentioned in the category of champions and that’s the next step,” he added.
The Kentucky University product did not only showcase all-around dominance but he put on a performance that resembled a former Laker Legend in Shaquille O’Neal by imposing his way in the paint, putting up 14 of his 21 field goal attempts inside the shaded area.
“I just want to come out with a lot of energy, be aggressive on the offensive glass and playing in the dunkers’ area,” Davis said on his mindset dominating the paint in Game 1.
Heading in to Game 1 Davis admitted that he was feeling the jitters in his first game in the biggest stage in the NBA but once he saw the ball go up in the air, everything was all about the game for him.
“It’s the Finals. First time experiencing this, I obviously want to come out and get the win. I always put pressure on myself and it’s the same thing on the Game 1 of Western Conference Finals. Once the ball gets tipped up all that goes away and I play basketball,” he said.
After years of suffering in a losing franchise, there is no question Davis is hungry for success in his first Finals series and now that he has tasted blood, we can only expect high level performance in the next few games.
Game 2 of the NBA Finals will be at 9:00 AM Manila time on Saturday, October 3.