NEW ORLEANS — When all is said and done, Anthony Davis will have played in 78 percent of the possible 82 games during his rookie season with the Hornets.
And he’s not nearly satisfied with that number.
The bright side? Davis, still 20, learned early that to get where he wants to be, he’ll have to take better care of himself.
“It wears down your body a lot,” Davis said. “You’ve got to take care of your body. There is a lot of wear and tear, over 82 games, especially at my position. My biggest focus is wanting to get stronger.”
The other good news? Davis was one of the best rookies in the NBA this past season and showed great potential.
The 6-foot-10, 220-pound power forward led the NBA’s rookies with 20 double-double in spite playing in only 64 games. He averaged 13.5 points, 8.2 rebounds and 1.75 blocks per game.
His efficiency rating, which measures the difference between positive and negative statistics, of 18.2 was the highest among rookies.
Davis did this in spite of averaging about 28 minutes per game. While he wanted to play more, he’s not worried about playing time.
“I know he’s going to steer me in the right direction,” Davis said of Hornets coach Monty Williams. “He’s never going to steer me wrong. We are all looking at the big picture here. What he has in mind for me right now, I’m happy with.”
Williams was hampered, however, by several injuries Davis sustained this season. He missed games in November and December due to a concussion and stress reaction in his left ankle. He missed additional games in February because of a sprained shoulder. His season ended early after he sprained the medial collateral ligament in his left knee.
In the end, Davis thought he did “pretty well” this season despite his physical setbacks. Now he knows he must make strides for the next season and beyond.
“What I am looking forward to is the offseason, to start working and getting better, try to change things around next season,” Davis said. “I want to continue to do the same thing I do now – and more. Running the floor, rebounding, playing around the basket. The things that make me better and make my team better.
“If I continue to do that, and add whatever Coach Monty wants me to add, I think we can be pretty good.”