As the Los Angeles Lakers wrap up one of the most disappointing seasons in franchise history and prepare for a consequential summer that could include major changes to try and get back on a championship trajectory, Anthony Davis says ‘he doesn’t care about the hypothetical business scenarios that involve him.
“I can’t control these things,” Davis told ESPN after the Lakers lost to the Phoenix Suns on Tuesday, which eliminated LA from the qualifying tournament. “It’s an upstairs thing. A Klutch, Rich Paul thing. My agency.
“I mean, my job is to go out and play basketball. Obviously, I love it in LA. If that’s something they’re considering, then we’ll have a conversation about it. I don’t know what they’re talking about. , what’s the plan.”
To be clear, Davis has no indication the Lakers will trade him, but as a 10-year NBA veteran, he knows how the league works. “I mean, I don’t think they plan to do anything [with me]”, he said. “I don’t know, man. F—, I don’t know.”
LA traded for Davis nearly three years ago, sending Brandon Ingram, Lonzo Ball, Josh Hart, three first-round picks and two pick trades to the New Orleans Pelicans for the talented big man.
Davis made an immediate impact in his freshman year with LA, playing in 62 of 71 regular season games during the shortened season and helping the Lakers win the championship while finishing second in Defensive Player of the Year voting. After that title, the Lakers rewarded Davis with a five-year, $190 million contract extension.
Since then, he has missed exactly half of Los Angeles’ regular season games due to various injuries. Thursday’s game against the Golden State Warriors, for which Davis will be sidelined with a sprained right midfoot and plantar fascia, marks game No. 76 of 152 he’s missed since the start of the season. the 2020-21 season. .
Davis, an eight-time All-Star and four-time All-NBA, is aware that his injury history is the only major wart on an otherwise excellent professional resume.
“My job is to be on the basketball court and play games,” Davis said. “When I’m healthy, I’m a mother — uh. But I have to stay healthy. Unfortunately, those were two injuries I couldn’t control this year, but I’ll get back to them next year. next and I’ll see what happens.”
Davis missed 17 consecutive games from late December to late January after sustaining an MCL sprain in his left knee. Then in mid-February, he suffered a foot injury which caused him to miss 18 consecutive games.
But those injuries, Davis said, don’t make him injury-prone. Both stemmed from unfortunate circumstances that would have hurt any player.
“I haven’t had any injuries this year where it was, ‘Damn it’s AD’s fault,'” Davis said. “Someone falls in my leg, sprains my MCL. Exact same thing [Kevin Durant] had.”
Indeed, Durant has missed 21 straight games after Brooklyn Nets teammate Bruce Brown fell backwards in his left leg while coming back on transition defense against the New Orleans Pelicans and absorbing contact from Herb Jones that sent him sprawling.
It was reminiscent of the example this season when LeBron James attempted a back and forth with Davis and knocked the Timberwolves’ Jaden McDaniels to the ground and crashed into Davis’ knee – James used a swimming motion to pass McDaniels and the Wolf Wing lost their balance.
A few months later, Davis’ second major injury of the season came when he leapt into the air to catch an off-target lob pass from teammate Malik Monk and landed on a size 20 basketball from Jazz Center. of Utah Rudy Gobert as he came. back down to the ground. “And then I fall on somebody’s foot and I twist my ankle really badly – well, my foot, really badly,” Davis said. “I can’t control this.”
When asked if the extended offseason would allow the 29-year-old Davis to reassess his training methods in hopes of staying healthy in the future, the big man pushed back.
“No,” Davis said. “To be honest, my training methods were top notch. I can’t control stepping on someone’s foot and I can’t control someone falling into my leg. It’s not not like I was out of shape and I did it. Crazy bullshit — or it was all I could control.”
Davis believes his approach to training has only helped him, not hurt him.
“The good thing is what people don’t know is the doctors told me you were lucky. Our team doctor said if you don’t do the job you you were supposed to do this summer, both could have been worse,” Davis said.
“I could have had one, kick my foot a lot more. Or I could have ripped from the s— to the knee. So that’s positive for me, knowing that I’ve worked a lot this summer and I prevented catastrophic injuries from happening to my body.
“So people can say what they want to say, but I know what I do every summer to prepare for an 82-game season.”
The Lakers announced Thursday that forward Trevor Ariza was on waivers.
Ariza has appeared in 24 games (11 starts) for the Lakers this season. He averaged 4.0 points, 3.4 rebounds and 1.1 assists in 19.3 minutes per game.