On Conference Call With Anthony Davis

Published: July 27, 2015

Anthony Davis took 30 minutes out of his day to answer any and all questions from the media on everything from his contract to Monty’s departure, Gentry’s hiring, recruiting future free agents, and more. He was forthright in his answers and really didn’t hold anything back. More than anything, he sounded excited about the upcoming season and was universally optimistic about the direction that the team was heading. Davis spoke at length about a variety of subjects, including:

The Organization

– AD spoke several times about how much confidence he had in the organization and the direction that they were heading. Said he trusts their vision and feels comfortable with their plan.

– Said Monty still has nothing but great things to say about the organization, and understands it was a business decision.

– Said he wouldn’t have signed the full 5 year deal if he didn’t believe in the organization. Obviously he does believe in them.

Running It Back

– AD said he was told early in the process by Gentry that he loved the team as currently constructed and wanted to bring most of the guys back. Gentry seems to believe that the same team can be better with just a few adjustments and better health.

– AD talked several times about how the team has been building good chemistry these past few years and expects that to continue to grow this season. Was glad that the chemistry wasn’t disrupted this summer.

– AD said he has talked to almost everyone and they are excited about the pace they are going to play at and the defensive philosophy they will implement. Specifically mentioned how excited Omer Asik was about the new systems.

Gentry and the Coaching Staff

– AD talked about the NBA Finals shout out that Gentry gave to him and said it was exciting. Said that when he finally spoke to Gentry about it, Gentry actually believes it too. Believes they can get there.

– AD talked several times about Kevin Hanson and how he is glad to have him back. Said bringing back Fred Vinson was huge too because those two have been working with all of the guys and it is big to keep that continuity.

– Anthony Davis could not stop talking about Darren Erman, it seemed like. Even when a question had nothing to do with Erman, AD seemed to bring him up and stated multiple times that he was one of the best defensive coaches in the league. Said he already feels like he has learned so much from Erman in a short period of time.

– Said that the pace with Gentry is going to be “unbelievable” and that he was a hug fan of Gentry in Phoenix with Nash and Amare, along with what he has done recently in LA and Golden State.

Offseason Improvements

– In addition to his three-point shot, Davis said he was working on his ball handling, post moves and passing. Specifically, he said he wants to be able to take the ball off the defensive glass and push it up the court at times, like Draymond Green did in Golden State. Also, he said he has been working on his playmaking skills and how to read defenses so he can get teammates open looks – specifically when he gets doubled. He has been working on making passes out of double teams and even dribbling out of double teams to make plays for teammates.

– Davis said he is spending “15 to 20 minutes” every session working on defense. He has been working a lot with Erman on that end and we can expect a big jump from him there.

– Davis said that Monty even talked to him after the video of him working out in the gym surfaced and told him he was leaning a little bit on his 3’s. Davis laughed that Monty is still coaching him.

AD the Recruiter

– Davis said that he is not going to go to Vegas (Team USA) with the intention of telling guys they should come to New Orleans. But he did say that when the team starts winning and guys start seeing that, he expects guys to get in touch with him or Alvin or Dell. He thinks that, more than anything, will get guys interested in New Orleans.

– Davis said he hasn’t talked to Cole much about his contract situation, and that he will leave that up to Dell, but he would love to have him back. Said Cole, along with DC and Pondexter, really helped bring their defense to a new level last season.

Other Tidbits and Takeaways

– AD said that he thinks adding Kendrick Perkins will be big for the team, as he gives them a veteran leader who has been through a lot.

– Davis seemed to think Monty really handled the whole situation with class, and he is glad to see Monty got another gig with a good organization. Everyone has moved on, and Davis trusts the organizations decision.

– I just can’t get over how much AD talked about Erman. It should come as no surprise, because other players have praised his work ethic and knowledge in the past too. It might not happen right away, but if those two get to work together for the next few years, I would expect AD to rack up multiple DPOY awards.

– AD was excited — as excited as we see/hear AD get. He spoke in long, extended paragraphs about everything that happened this summer; Very different from his typical short answers. He spoke about the pace they expect to play at, and how much he expects their defense to improve. He spoke about how great it was to bring the same guys back and how excited each of those guys were about the direction the team was heading in. He was excited about Gentry telling him that he was going to get the ball more, and equally as excited about being a playmaker that will help make the game easier for his teammates.

Already one of the best players in the world, AD is working hard, he is excited, and has a coaching staff making him better each and every day.

Look out world.



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