Lakers Notes: Davis, Trades, Gabriel, Improvement

Lakers fans in Washington, D.C. chanted “MVP!” after Anthony Davis demolished the Wizards with 55 points, 17 rebounds and three blocks on Sunday. Davis has suddenly entered the Most Valuable Player award picture, according to Dave McMenamin of ESPN.

“He’s been unbelievable, man,” LeBron James said. “On both sides of the floor. I mean, playing like the MVP of this league. Just straight dominance.”

Entering Tuesday, Davis has averaged 35.3 points on 64.8% from the field, 15.6 rebounds and 2.9 blocks over the last nine games. His resurgence has revitalized the franchise, Jovan Buha of The Athletic notes. Buha takes a closer look at Davis’ scoring outbursts.

Davis departed Tuesday’s game at Cleveland with flu-like symptoms, McMenamin tweets.

We have more on the Lakers:

  • With Davis on a roll, the Lakers should consider making a big move to improve their postseason prospects, Eric Pincus of Bleacher Report writes.  If they finally decide to move Russell Westbrook, they need a play-maker who can ease James’ burden while helping Davis get high-percentage shots. There’s also a need for a versatile wing, Pincus adds.
  • Wenyen Gabriel will be out at least a week due to a left shoulder sprain, Kyle Goon of the Orange County Register tweets. Gabriel, a valuable reserve, will miss all four remaining games during this week’s current road trip.
  • Beyond Davis’ stretches of dominance, first-year coach Darvin Ham sees improvement across the board, Jeff Zillgitt of USA Today writes. “Their buy-in is accelerating at a pace a where they’re embracing everything we’re throwing at them, the way we want to play offensively and defensively,” Ham said. “You’re going to go through that period of discovery. Those first 20, 25 games, you’re learning your team, your team is learning you, coming in as a new staff, a new head coach while also managing who’s available, who’s not available, guys out for various illnesses and various injuries and you’re trying to mix and match the lineup. And now, we’re here, we’re becoming more whole by the day.”
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