Spotlight on 2012 NBA Draft Prospects: Anthony Davis

Anthony Davis

School: Kentucky  |  Year: Freshman  |  Age: 18  |  Born: March 11, 1993  |  Position: PF
Height: 6’10”  |  Weight: 220  |  From: Chicago, IL  |  Best Case Scenario: Chris Bosh 2.0

OFFENSIVE STATS (PER GAME)
  YEAR GM FG FGA FG% 3PT 3PTA 3PT% FT FTA FT% PTS  
2011-12 40 5.3 8.4 62.3% 0.1 0.5 15.0% 3.6 5.1 70.9% 14.2

HUSTLE STATS (PER GAME)
  YEAR MIN/GM OREB DREB TREB AST STL BLK TO AST/TO  
2011-12 32.0 3.0 7.4 10.4 1.3 1.4 4.7 1.0 1:0.8

 
Anthony Davis is a physical specimen for the power forward position, possessing a 7’4” wingspan and incredible shot-blocking instincts. Davis thrives when running in transition, having great mobility, agility, and quickness for a big man. He is a great outlet passer and can look over the court to find teammate running, hitting them in stride for easy baskets. Davis catches anything thrown up to him near the hoop, and he has soft hands that allow him to finish in traffic around the basket. Davis is an excellent rebounder, who does not always get perfect inside position on his man, but compensates for it with his extraordinary length and athleticism.

Davis is blessed with very high intelligence and knows exactly where to be at all times on the court. He makes things easy for his teammates, bailing out the team by alley-ooping virtually anything thrown to him. He has the ability to turn nearly any broken play into points.

Up until his junior year, Davis was a 6’3” point guard, and his confidence playing on the perimeter and dribbling is very evident in his game. He is very comfortable catching the ball on the perimeter and driving, and while his jump shot is still unpolished, he is confident pulling up from mid-range and just in front of the three-point line. He has very good shot mechanics which paint a bright future for his success shooting the ball. When driving to the basket, Davis tends to shoot without setting his feet or getting squared up to the basket, but his amazing body control and athleticism make up for it. As he progresses, Davis will need to improve his patience with the ball and set up properly when shooting.

As mentioned earlier, Davis is a magnificent shot-blocker and is a game-changing presence on defense as well as on offense. His length and athleticism are comparable to JaVale McGee’s, but his ability to stay out of foul trouble is what sets Davis apart from virtually all other shot-blockers. He can jump in the air and block shots on the way down, with his athleticism allowing him to hang in the air. Davis plays with such a fire that is not seen in many individuals, and his relentless pursuit and great help defense has changed the dynamic of Kentucky’s defense this season. He has a very high motor and great basketball IQ.

In order to be great at the next level, Davis will need to gain around 20 pounds of muscle in order to be able to “bang” with the very big power forwards and centers of the NBA. Davis has a good frame and has a good amount of room for gaining mass. Davis, along with other top prospects, will have to continue to not be content with where his game is at and keep working his hardest in order to maximize his potential. He has everything it takes to become an elite PF in the NBA, and could even be one of the top shot-blockers in the NBA as soon as next season. As shown by Anthony Randolph, it takes more than elite abilities to transform into a great NBA player, and Davis is going to need to put all of his effort and concentration into developing all aspects of his game while getting bigger.

Davis will need to become more comfortable playing with his back to the basket, developing more moves on the low block and polishing his hook-shot. As his jump shot develops, Davis will be a true threat to score whenever the ball is in his hands. He has elite explosiveness as a big man and is extremely versatile. With added mass, Davis will have the ability to dominantly defend the 3,4, or 5.

Follow Anthony Davis on Twitter @AntDavis23

Photo Credits: Punch Drunk Wolves