EL SEGUNDO (Calif.) -- Russell Westbrook referred to Anthony Davis as the "ultimate weapon" after their first practice as teammates. He vowed that he would maximize Davis's impact on the Los Angeles Lakers this season.
Davis is "one of a kind," Westbrook stated of Davis on Wednesday. He is the only person who can do all that he can at his size. My job is to keep him motivated every day, at practice and in games, so that he can reach his full potential each night.
Last season, Davis was not at the top of his game. Davis missed 36 games because of injury, which is exactly half the 72-game L.A. pandemic-shortened season. This was more than he missed during any full 82 game season. He also missed 21 games in 2015-16.
Davis had the lowest average number of rebounds (7.9), blocks (1.6), and shot his lowest percentage from the field (49.1%), and free throw line (73.8%). His average scoring score of 21.8 points per contest was his lowest since his second season in the league.
Davis, who is about to enter his 10th NBA season, already has a number of achievements in the NBA, including eight All-Star appearances and four All-Defensive Team selections. And of course, the 2020 Orlando championship.
Westbrook believes Davis' ceiling should exceed what he achieved last season.
Westbrook stated, "He's been playing in this league for a while, so he knows how to play it." He knows what he should do, and I now know what he wants. It's my responsibility to ensure that he does every night.
Davis spoke to reporters after practice while sitting next Westbrook. He heard what Westbrook had to say about Davis and accepted it.
Davis stated, "I like teammates that are going to push my limits." Encouragement is all I need. I need to be pushed. I need guys to tell me what I'm doing wrong. In this first practice, Russ and I had many conversations about what we could do as a duo.
Davis added a few teammates to Westbrook's roster -- Rajon Rondo and Carmelo Anthony, DeAndre Jordan, DeAndre Howard, DeAndre Jones -- who stayed with him.
He said, "That's exactly what I want." "I have many guys who are always there to help me with things. It's hard to ask for more from a player who is trying to improve."
Frank Vogel, the Lakers coach, stated earlier this week that he would push Davis to his own limits by playing him at the 5, this season. However, he believes that Davis is more self-motivated than he was letting out.
Vogel stated that Anthony does not need much of it after the opening of L.A.’s two-day training camp. He's motivated to bounce back from last year's mistakes and we were all disappointed that his performance was not up to par due to injuries and lack of offseason.
"But he's certainly put in the effort this offseason. He looks great and we'll all push each other."