There’s only so much stress a new player in the NBA can handle. At some point, each rookie is bound to hit the unavoidable “rookie wall”, or make some sort of “rookie mistake” that either costs his team a game or finds the player a nice piece of the bench to keep warm. Sometimes it’s both a game and bench time. Sometimes it’s the “rookie wall” and “rookie mistakes”.
And sometimes it’s injuries.
Anthony Davis, one of the most heralded draft picks in recent years, has yet to run into the “rookie wall” or make a “rookie mistake”. He has, however, been hit by the injury bug several times already, and the season has yet to reach the quarter mark.
Davis has been one of this years top rookies when he’s on the court. AD is averaging 16 points per game (second among rookies), 8.3 rebouds per game (first among rookies), and an outstanding 2.2 blocks per game (also first among rookies). Were Davis playing in every game in this young season, he probably would’ve unseated Damian Lillard from the top spot in our Rookie Rankings by now. Yet a minor concussion and a lingering ankle injury have Davis sidelined for five games already and now tonight’s game against the Denver Nuggets.One thought behind the injuries is that Davis’ body simply isn’t used to the more physical competition that the NBA offers. Standing at a tall and lanky 6′ 10″ and 220 lbs., Davis has been pushed around by his larger opponents, and it’s already started to take its toll on his body.
Another issue for Davis is that his body could be going through difficult times as it continues to adjust to itself. Davis, mind you, entered high school at a mere 6′ 1″ before sprouting to 6′ 9″ by his junior year. Ideally, Davis should still be a sophomore in college and a mere two years (three at most) away from this massive growth spurt. As Davis’ body continues to try to grow into its own, Davis continues to put it through rigorous poundings game after game, which can’t help matters very much.
Anthony Davis has all the tools to be a fantastic player. He has the length, athleticism, and on-court awareness to be an All-Star for years to come. Right now, though, he just needs his body to cooperate.