Are 61 games enough to put Anthony Davis on an All-NBA team?

AP Photo/Max Becherer
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The Pelicans shut down Anthony Davis, who underwent surgery on his knee and shoulder.

But the big question remains: Will Davis make an All-NBA team, triggering the Derrick Rose Rule that would pay him an extra $24 million over his five-year contract extension?

Davis played just 61 games this season – 75.3% of New Orleans’ 82. Here’s how that compares historically with other All-NBA players:


Nearly 30% of All-NBA players have played all their teams games. More than two-thirds played at least 95% of their teams games.

But an All-NBA season with Davis’ workload is not unprecedented. In fact, a player has played a smaller share of his team’s games 26 times and made an All-NBA team:

Player Year Team G Team G % of Team G
Gus Johnson 1966 BAL 41 80 51.3%
Scottie Pippen 1998 CHI 44 82 53.7%
Yao Ming 2007 HOU 48 82 58.5%
Dennis Rodman 1995 SAS 49 82 59.8%
Elgin Baylor 1962 LAL 48 80 60.0%
Pete Maravich 1978 NOJ 50 82 61.0%
Dwyane Wade 2007 MIA 51 82 62.2%
Shaquille O’Neal 1997 LAL 51 82 62.2%
Jerry West 1968 LAL 51 82 62.2%
Bob Pettit 1965 STL 50 80 62.5%
Chris Webber 2002 SAC 54 82 65.9%
Shaquille O’Neal 1996 ORL 54 82 65.9%
Yao Ming 2008 HOU 55 82 67.1%
Bernard King 1985 NYK 55 82 67.1%
Hakeem Olajuwon 1991 HOU 56 82 68.3%
Jerry West 1963 LAL 55 80 68.8%
Yao Ming 2006 HOU 57 82 69.5%
Bill Walton 1978 POR 58 82 70.7%
DeMarcus Cousins 2015 SAC 59 82 72.0%
Shaquille O’Neal 2006 MIA 59 82 72.0%
Anfernee Hardaway 1997 ORL 59 82 72.0%
Allen Iverson 2002 PHI 60 82 73.2%
Shaquille O’Neal 1998 LAL 60 82 73.2%
Dwyane Wade 2012 MIA 49 66 74.2%
Jerry West 1969 LAL 61 82 74.4%
Frankie Baumholtz 1947 CLR 45 60 75.0%

Of course, Davis isn’t competing against Scottie Pippen in 1998 or DeMarcus Cousins last year. He’s competing against forwards and centers in 2015-16.

Though Davis typically started at power forward, he played 54% of his minutes at center. Voters should feel comfortable picking him at either position.

Here are games played for Davis’ key All-NBA competitors – forwards in blue, centers in gold (sorted by win shares):


A majority of his competition has already played more games than him. And most of the rest – Hassan Whiteside, Pau Gasol, Derrick Favors and DeMarcus Cousins – will probably pass him. All four could.

For what it’s worth, Davis has the same win-share total as Hayward.

Voters should weigh whether Davis contributed more in his 61 games (with perhaps a replacement-level boost for the minutes Davis was out) than other players did in however many games they played.

It will be hard for Davis to top Kevin Durant, Kawhi Leonard, LeBron James or Draymond Green at forward. If Davis still ranks ahead of Paul Millsap and LaMarcus Aldridge now, they have time to overtake what would be a slim margin. And that’s all six All-NBA forward slots taken without even getting into Paul George, Gordon Hayward and other dark-horse picks.

Center is more wide open, but Davis’ absence will hurt his case against DeMarcus Cousins, DeAndre Jordan, Al Horford, Hassan Whiteside and Andre Drummond. In any race, 21 missed games should matter. In one this close, they could be the difference.

Simply, it will be close.

Unfortunately for Davis, there’s nothing more he can do on the court to help himself. He just must hope voters still consider his work in 61 games and realize rewarding him with an All-NBA season has plenty of precedent.