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FutureStarrAnthony Davis' Game 1 Performance Leaves the Inside Crew Impressed
Anthony Davis has proven his worth as one of the NBA's elite players despite numerous injuries that have hindered him in the past; Game 1 against the Warriors proved this point once again. He completely controlled the interior and dominated in the paint to help LA come away victorious, notching some big blocks along the way! 1. 30 Points and 20 Rebounds The Inside Crew witnessed Anthony Davis put on one of his finest playoff performances yet and were left truly wowed. The 6-foot-10 forward totaled 30 points, 23 rebounds and four blocks as Los Angeles Lakers defeated Golden State Warriors 117-112 in Game 1 of Western Conference Semifinals on Tuesday night. Davis set a career high with 30 points, 20 rebounds and four blocks during his postseason debut - only Shaquille O'Neal, Elgin Baylor and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar have accomplished this feat prior to entering. Davis also set an all-time scoring total from any Laker not named LeBron James since 2004 in postseason play. Concerns were expressed as to whether Davis would be able to play this series with an ongoing foot injury, yet he proved his mettle by staying out on the floor for 44 minutes and posting a triple-double to lead the Lakers to their inaugural playoff victory in franchise history. Davis is showing that he can be one of the NBA's most effective two-way players if he approaches every game with energy and passion, something the Lakers will need as they attempt to advance to either the Western Conference Finals against either Sacramento or Golden State. However, one sequence in Game 1 particularly caught everyone's eye. It demonstrated just how much fear, respect and intimidation big men can inflict upon an offense. Beginning the sequence was Davis. He made an aggressive drive into the corner before hitting a layup for two points before being fouled and sent to the foul line. Once there he gave back the ball to Wiggins who had his feet dangling under the basket waiting to challenge Davis inside. That was exactly what he did, and that was why the Warriors could never gain any momentum. 21 seconds of uninterrupted movement made up a pace which the Warriors simply could not match. 2. Three Blocks Los Angeles Lakers took control of their Western Conference Semifinal matchup against Golden State Warriors with a dramatic 117-112 win at Chase Center Tuesday night, led by Anthony Davis' outstanding game. Five starters finished double figures for Los Angeles Lakers; Anthony Davis led with 34 points. Tim Duncan and Al Horford also managed this feat twice each. In Game 1, Tim broke multiple franchise records on his way to an emphatic Game 1 win for the Spurs and Celtics respectively. He became just the fourth player in history with at least 30 points, 20 rebounds, four blocks in one postseason game! While Davis has already broken a number of records this season, this performance stands as his best so far. Additionally, his recent run of form has helped boost the Lakers as he has averaged 32.9 points and 15.4 rebounds during their eight-game win streak. On Wednesday night, 8-time All-Star Lonzo Ball hit four three-point shots to score 30 points for his Lakers side against the Warriors and secure home court advantage in another Western Conference Semifinal matchup. If they want any chance of victory in this series against them, however, they must keep their ball moving on offense while keeping all bigs healthy and scoring consistently on offense. One of the more underappreciated aspects of Davis' Game 1 performance was his ability to get to the basket, where he has averaged an impressive 4.1 points on post-ups this season - fifth highest among NBA players. But in Game 1, Davis did an admirable job getting to the basket, scoring 10 points on 5-of-6 shooting while blocking two shots en route. That performance could serve as an immense boost to a team that has struggled with post-ups this year and could reap long-term dividends later on in this series. Davis played 43 minutes and 50 seconds in the opening half despite missing 20 games due to foot stress injury this season. Moreover, Los Angeles has managed his workload accordingly during playoff playbacks by only playing him back-to-back since his return. 3. Five Assists Anthony Davis put up an impressive showing for the Los Angeles Lakers against the Golden State Warriors to help secure Game One with a score of 30 points, 23 rebounds, five assists and four blocks en route to helping his team take 117-112 victory on Tuesday. The inside crew was highly impressed by Davis' impressive on-court performance. He was the best Laker at both ends of the floor while playing only 44 minutes total. While James, D'Angelo Russell and Dennis Schroder all made contributions on both ends of the court, Davis led his team with 30 points - becoming only the fifth NBA player ever to do so in a playoffs game. He added 23 rebounds to match his season-high set against Memphis and was one of the most effective players on the court during the first half despite the Warriors' efforts to limit his influence. Davis made himself stand out with an impressive defensive performance. On the opening possession, he blocked Stephen Curry's runner; later he did it again on another basket, providing a key moment that allowed the Lakers to gain early control of the game. Ham logged 43 minutes and 50 seconds - more than any other player in the game! He attributes this performance to Lakers load management during regular season games for giving him enough playing time in playoffs. At their Conference Semifinal matchups against either Golden State Warriors or Sacramento Kings, Lakers fans will need their two-way play to carry them past. This performance was another demonstration of that two-way approach which will prove key. At both ends of the floor, Davis has often been underrated as an underrated player. Due to injury he missed several regular season games but has been more consistent than anyone on Los Angeles roster in postseason play - if he keeps performing like in Game 1, Los Angeles has an excellent shot at reaching Conference Finals. 4. Three Field Goals Davis made an impressionful showing against Golden State in Game 1, stunning all who watched. He took full advantage of his opportunity to demonstrate what he has been capable of since coming to Los Angeles via trade from Dallas; scoring 30 points while also collecting 23 rebounds and tallying 5 assists and 4 blocks - impressive numbers indeed! That was not out of character for him, yet something he had never accomplished in a playoff game before. He joined Shaquille O'Neal, Elgin Baylor, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Wilt Chamberlain as only five players to score 30+ points in one playoff game. On Tuesday night in San Francisco, Los Angeles Lakers' 30-point output wasn't quite enough to win them the game outright but did help Los Angeles gain an early edge in their best-of-seven Western Conference semifinal series with San Francisco Warriors. Defensively they held them to 48 points and 34.8 percent shooting from 3-point range during the second half. Their offense also gradually decreased during that period before D'Angelo Russell's off-balance jump hook with 1:24 remaining sent Warriors on an 14-0 run that tied it all up again and gave Los Angeles control. But the highlight of the game came during the final 90 seconds when Davis blocked Stephen Curry's layup attempt and corralled a rebound off Jordan Poole's miss - setting L.A. up to score and take an early series lead. Davis' defensive dominance will be crucial if Los Angeles hopes to defeat Warriors' attack and advance further in playoffs. If the Lakers hope to come out ahead in this series, they need Davis to continue playing like he did in Game 1. Their power forward must continue his impressive play at both ends of the court against Warriors defenders to give his team its best shot at playoff success.