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Anthony Davis dominates in preseason debut as Los Angeles Lakers trounce Golden State Warriors

Sunday 6 October 2019 10:33, UK

Anthony Davis celebrates his first Lakers basket 1:51
Anthony Davis was in dominant form as he needed just 18 minutes to post a 22-point, 10-rebound double-double on his Lakers debut against the Golden State Warriors

He only played one half, but Anthony Davis just kept pulling tricks out of his bag in his first game for the Los Angeles Lakers.

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Davis dominated the Lakers' preseason opener from start to finish, hitting his team's first bucket and never relenting. In just 18 minutes of action, Davis piled up 22 points and 10 rebounds while showing many of the skills that make him such a unique talent.

"He's such a versatile threat offensively," head coach Frank Vogel said. "He can beat you with step-back jumpers, three-point shots, drives from the perimeter - but he's also one of the best rim-finishers in the game. He can get to the rim himself and he's also a terrific lob threat and finisher inside."

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Davis lived at the hoop in the Lakers' 123-101 rout over Golden State, throwing down five dunks in the first quarter alone - including three in a row at one point.

Davis, who ranked second in the NBA in second-chance points last season - could not be contained on the boards, battling for four put-back buckets.

Anthony Davis shoots over Draymond Green 1:26
Anthony Davis said his oncourt chemistry with LeBron James is building after the Los Angeles Lakers' emphatic preseason win over the Golden State Warriors

"I was just trying to attack the offensive glass," Davis said. "Just trying to be aggressive, get myself going. I haven't played in a while, so I was just trying to do the little things and the ball just kinda ended up in my hands. So I just tried to get up and dunk it and get myself going."

While Davis clearly didn't lack for physicality, LeBron James - who had 15 points and eight assists in one half - was quick to point out his mind, calling AD a "very cerebral player."

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LeBron James and Anthony Davis celebrate after a Lakers basket against Golden State
Image: LeBron James and Davis celebrate after a Lakers basket against Golden State

The duo connected on a few plays, including when James hit Davis with a pocket pass for a dunk.

"That's tough to cover," Davis said. "You got a guy like him going downhill and a guy like me who's rolling who is a lob threat - you've got to pick your poison."

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Davis drew rave reviews throughout the Lakers' locker room. Vogel was also among the chorus singing his praises. "It's going to be very difficult to slow him down with what we have around him. I'm excited about what he's going to do, and Lakers fans should be too."

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Davis certainly offered plenty to get excited about, with a one-game highlight tape that included a spin move into an alley-oop and a between-the-legs crossover into a circus 'And 1' jumper.

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But above all else, Davis - who hadn't played in an NBA arena in seven months - was simply pleased with getting to hit the court. "I was ready to get back on the floor again," Davis said. "I haven't played in a while, so I was just happy to get back on the floor and just play basketball."

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