Anthony Davis made a statement on his return to New Orleans Pelicans in his new Los Angeles Lakers jersey.
After having requested a trade in January, Davis was finally traded to the Lakers in exchange with Brandon Ingram, Lonzo Ball and Josh Hart. During his return to New Orleans for the first time since, Davis was peppered with jeers, but that hardly seemed to affect his performance.
Davis scored a game-high 41 points to lead the Lakers to a 114-110 win after having trailed earlier in the game. The 41 points scored by Davis broke the record for the most points scored by a player while facing his former team for the first time.
Following the performance, Lakers forward Kyle Kuzma felt that it was the perfect response to the crowd’s animosity.
“New Orleans fans should probably boo their own team for letting him get 40 and come back,” Kuzma was quoted as saying by ESPN. “I don’t know what that was. But he was ready for this game. On the way to the arena on the bus he was rapping out loud and he never really does that so you could kinda tell that he was ready to play.”
Anthony Davis received boos during his introduction in New Orleans. pic.twitter.com/xISspJJvdO
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) November 28, 2019
In the 37 minutes that Davis payed, he also contributed with nine rebounds and an assist apart from the 41 points. He also made a significant steal in the final few seconds of the game that sealed the game for the Lakers.
Talking after the game, Davis said that he had felt good before the game and was happy that his team was able to win the match.
“I felt good coming to the game when the ball was tipped,” Davis said. “I think coming in and just worrying about what was on the floor and not what the crowd was saying or whatever. I did here something during the national anthem. That was the only time, it was super quiet. Other than that, I didn’t really hear much. I actually got some love when I was sitting on the bench from some Pelican fans.”
“It just happened to work out that way. I just wanted to get the win. It was a great game. We competed and I think from my perspective everybody in the world that’s all they want. A game like that. Two good teams going at it. I won’t say tension, but everybody wanted to see. It was fun for me. Had a great time but most importantly I was just glad we got the win.”