Soon — maybe by the end of this season, certainly within two years — Anthony Davis is going to be the third best player in the NBA. (Coach Mike Dunleavy Sr. said on SiriusXM NBA radio last week he thinks he might be right now.)
He will play the four for the Pelicans this year, but this video shows you why you want him as the five in International ball. He’s guarding his man in the paint, slides over to make the defensive play but when Alex Garcia loses the ball Davis grabs it, dribbles the ball up out of traffic, passes to Klay Thompson, then Davis just outruns everyone down the court for the alley-oop.
Exactly what international team is going to match that?
“We think he’s one of the top players in the league and we need for him to be that five that nobody has,” Team coach Mike Krzyzewski said to PBT in Las Vegas. “Everyone talks about things we don’t have, well they don’t have him.”
Davis finished with 20 points (on 15 shots), 8 rebounds and 5 blocks on the night. The Chicago native was pretty much Team USA’s best player at the United Center.
The World Cup tournament could well be a breakout for him.
Preseason is only just getting underway and there’s already a potentially serious injury to report. In the game between the Hornets and Magic on Saturday night, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist was taken to the locker room after suffering a right shoulder injury. The Hornets announced that he was then taken to an Orlando-area hospital for follow-up x-rays:
We likely won’t know more about the extent of his injury until tomorrow, but if it was serious, that would be a major loss for the Hornets. Kidd-Gilchrist is their best perimeter defender and an important piece if they hope to compete for a playoff spot this year.
CHICAGO — Derrick Rose is nearing a return to practice with the Bulls. After undergoing surgery on Wednesday to repair a fractured left orbital suffered in practice on Tuesday, Rose’s recovery is going as expected and he’s expected to rejoin the team on Wednesday.
“The follow-up [exam] went very well,” Bulls coach Fred Hoiberg said after practice on Saturday. “They’ve advised him to continue to let that site heal, and they think the best way for him to do that is to stay at home at this time. We plan on him being back on Wednesday morning.”
Rose won’t be able to participate in practice for another week after that — Hoiberg said the previously announced two-week timetable for returning to basketball activities remains on schedule — but with a radically different offense, there’s a lot to learn, and just being around the team to watch practices and learn the new play sets is important.
“We’re going to actually get over there and watch some film with him today,” Hoiberg said. “Because again, like we talked about [Friday], we’ve added new sets, new things, so we’ll get him caught up by a couple of coaches going over and seeing him at his house.”
The two-week timetable puts Rose’s return to basketball activity around next Wednesday, October 14. From there, it will be a matter of getting him back into game shape before Hoiberg is comfortable playing him in games.
Hoiberg said earlier this week that he is optimistic Rose will be able to play when the Bulls kick off the regular season at home on October 27 against the Cleveland Cavaliers.