The New Orleans Pelicans may have been swept in the first-round of the NBA Playoffs by the Golden State Warriors, but NBA fans got a glimpse of the future.
Pelicans’ forward Anthony Davis had a fantastic 2014-15 regular season, and in his first appearance in NBA Playoffs, he did not disappoint. Facing an opponent like the Warriors, who have gotten some playoff experience under their belts was a difficult task for Davis. The Warriors had the best record in the regular season, and in the playoffs could very well challenge for a NBA title.
Coming into the series, expectations for Davis were high, as he was a match-up nightmare for the Warriors front-court. The Warriors threw pretty much every forward and center they had at Davis to stop him, but none of them saw any consistent success.
In four games this postseason, Davis averaged 43.0 MPG, 31.5 PPG, 11.0 RPG, and 3.0 BPG. Davis was the most efficient player in the NBA this season when on the court, and he continued his efficient shooting in the playoffs 54% shooting from the field. In his first playoff appearance, Davis was able to average more points per game than LeBron James did in his first taste of the playoffs. While James made it further in his first playoff appearance, Davis was just as dominant.
Sadly for Davis, he is playing in the Western Conference, and that is not an easy place to advance. If the Pelicans were in the Eastern Conference this season, they certainly wouldn’t have been an eighth seed, and would have likely advanced. Davis is going to have a tough road ahead of him if he is the Western Conference in the coming years, as there are some very talented players and teams.
While Davis is a great player and had a great series, he may not have been the best player on the court. Warriors’ point guard Stephen Curry had a magnificent series as well, which included a magical comeback in Game 3. The Pelicans certainly helped the Warriors and Curry pull off the magical upset, but some of the shots Curry was making were outstanding.
Curry has been one of the most electrifying players in the NBA this season, and could very well be the MVP. In the first-round series against the Pelicans, Curry averaged 39.8 MPG, 33.8 PPG, 7.3 APG, and 5,3 RPG.
Davis could very well be the future of the NBA, but Curry made the case that he is the present. In the first-round of the NBA Playoffs, one of the biggest takeaways is that Davis has emerged as one of the best players in the league.