LeBron Will Be ‘Revitalized’ Playing Next to Anthony Davis, Says Analyst

Lakers LeBron James Anthony Davis

Getty Anthony Davis talks with LeBron James as Davis is introduced as the newest player of the Los Angeles Lakers.

Coming into the 2019-2020 season, the Lakers have an entirely new look. Gone is the youth movement that surrounded LeBron James last season, instead replaced by Anthony Davis and a crop of established, veteran free agents. While the team as a whole looks to be a much better fit for James’ style of play, the addition of Davis, in particular, gives James the caliber of weapon he hasn’t had the opportunity to play alongside.

While James has played next to excellent guards in Kyrie Irving and Dwyane Wade yet has never had the versatile frontcourt weapon that Davis offers him. Both Kevin Love and Chris Bosh morphed into floor spacing third options, however, neither possess the sheer athleticism and talent that Davis brings to the table. A true superstar who commands double teams from opposing defenses, his gravitational pull on the court should help to open James up for a number of easier looks.

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LeBron Will Be ‘Revitalized’ Playing Next to Anthony Davis on Lakers, Says Analyst

Predicting the top four teams in the Western Conference: Lakers or Clippers at No. 1? | The JumpAmin Elhassan, Nick Friedell and Tim MacMahon each reveal their predictions for the top four seeds in the Western Conference for the 2019-20 NBA season, with the LA Clippers (led by Kawhi Leonard and Paul George), Los Angeles Lakers (LeBron James and Anthony Davis), Houston Rockets (James Harden and Russell Westbrook), Utah Jazz (Donovan Mitchell, Rudy Gobert and Mike Conley Jr.), Denver Nuggets (Nikola Jokic and Jamal Murray), and Portland Trail Blazers (Damian Lillard and CJ McCollum) being mentioned. #TheJump ✔ Subscribe to ESPN+ https://plus.espn.com/ ✔ Get the ESPN App: http://www.espn.com/espn/apps/espn ✔ Subscribe to ESPN on YouTube: http://es.pn/SUBSCRIBEtoYOUTUBE ✔ Subscribe to ESPN FC on YouTube: http://bit.ly/SUBSCRIBEtoESPNFC ✔ Subscribe to NBA on ESPN on YouTube: http://bit.ly/SUBSCRIBEtoNBAonESPN ✔ Watch ESPN on YouTube TV: http://es.pn/YouTubeTV Exclusive interviews with Rachel Nichols https://urlzs.com/jNURe Stephen A. Smith on ESPN https://urlzs.com/W19Tz ESPN on Social Media: ► Follow on Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/espn ► Like on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/espn ► Follow on Instagram: http://www.instagram.com/f/espn Visit ESPN on YouTube to get up-to-the-minute sports news coverage, scores, highlights and commentary for NFL, NHL, MLB, NBA, College Football, NCAA Basketball, soccer and more. More on ESPN.com: http://www.espn.com2019-07-18T22:45:00.000Z

ESPN analyst Nick Friedell made an interesting point in saying that James would be “revitalized” playing next to Davis. Coming off a year that saw him miss extended time with an injury for the first time in his career before being shut down after the Lakers had been eliminated from the playoffs, James had a down year despite averaging 27.4/8.5/8.3.

On traditional LeBron-led teams, he is the primary focal point of the offense who frequently draws a number of help defenders whenever he attacks the rim. With Davis on the court and knowing James’ ability to make excellent reads with the basketball, defenders will be more reluctant to leave a player of Davis’ caliber when James is capable of hitting the wide-open superstar for an uncontested look. This should result in James getting more opportunities to take his man one on one to the rim or simply draw help defense off wide-open shooters on the perimeter, making the Lakers (on paper) an incredibly dangerous offense.

As a result of this new look, most analysts are projecting a major turnaround for the Lakers. While the Lakers missed the playoffs at 37-45 last season, every analyst on ESPN’s First Take this morning had the Lakers firmly entrenched as a top-four team in the Western Conference. While the Clippers were the unanimous choice to win the west among the panel, most had the Lakers not far behind and Vegas oddsmakers even have the Lakers listed above the Clippers. Safe to say, the path to the Western Conference Finals seems to run through Los Angeles.


Lakers’ DeMarcus Cousins Looking For Bounce Back Season

DeMarcus Cousins EPIC Full Highlights vs Bulls (2018.01.22) – 44 Pts, 24 Reb, 10 Ast, 4 Stls!Subscribe, Like & Comment! —- Vintage Channel: https://goo.gl/PzMHpk My Twitter: https://goo.gl/EQbwXz My Facebook: https://goo.gl/385id5 My Instagram: https://goo.gl/1QF2zt —- All clips property of the NBA. No copyright infringement is intended. All videos are edited to follow the "Free Use" guideline of YouTube.2018-01-23T17:30:01.000Z

While Cousins’ per-36 numbers in his rehab year for the Warriors weren’t terrible, he didn’t look to be the same dominant interior force that was formerly a first-team All-NBA superstar. Coming off yet another injury sustained in the playoffs and with a barren market for his services, the Lakers were able to scoop him up on an extremely team-friendly deal in what both sides hope to be a mutually beneficial year. The Lakers need strong center play and should Cousins prove to be over his injuries and back to feeling comfortable on the court, he could help turn the Lakers from a contender into a certified championship-level team while creating a bidding war among teams for his services in free agency next year.