Why Anthony Davis Is The Key Behind The Lakers' Turnaround

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Ernesto Cova

The Los Angeles Lakers have been one of the biggest disappointments of the NBA season.

They made a huge splash in the offseason market, trading away some of their players, adding more veterans, and even trading for Russell Westbrook.

Nonetheless, Anthony Davis' struggles early in the season and his current injury have taken a massive toll on the team's ability to perform at the highest level.

That's why today, we're going to let you know just how big of a deal is for them to bring Davis back as soon as possible.

The Rusell Westbrook Effect

Russell Westbrook will do what Russell Westbrook does.

But if Davis is on the court, that means the Lakers don't need Westbrook taking that many shots, and that's when he's at his best.

Westbrook is a solid facilitator and playmaker, and he can even play some very good defense when he's locked in.

Without Davis, he's trying to do everything in the offensive end and it usually spells disaster, not to mention he's often worn out and uninterested in playing defense after doing so much in the other end of the floor.

LeBron's Age

There's no denying that LeBron James is one of the greatest players of all time, and he's aging like a fine wine.

Judging by his game, one could never guess that we're talking about a 37-year-old player.

Nonetheless, James has struggled with injuries over the past couple of years, and leaning so heavily on a 37-year-old playing at center looks far from ideal.

They need Davis back alongside him to take some pressure off his shoulders so he doesn't have to endure such a physical burden night in and night out.

Rim Protection

Davis is one of the best shot-blockers in the league and even when he's not swatting shots, his sole presence makes the rivals second-guess when driving through the lane.

The Lakers have the fourth-worst defense in the league in terms of points in the paint, per Team Rankings.com.

Without their top-notch rim protector looming around the restricted area, their rivals are scoring 48.7 points in the paint per game this season, and the team ranks 26th in total points allowed at 112.0 per game.

Expendable Pieces

Unsplash | Ramiro Pianarosa

Last but not least, let's not forget that basketball is a business and as such, teams often think of the players as assets and nothing more.

Having Davis back on the floor will give Frank Vogel more time to assess the roster he has around his three stars and further evaluate the needs they have.

With a healthy Davis, the Lakers can afford to take some risks and make moves, trade some of the players they brought in, and put together a roster that can gel.