With unflattering nicknames like “Day to Day-vis,” “Always Damaged,” and “Street Clothes,” it is safe to say that Anthony Davis gets criticized for being injury-prone. Davis seems to be done holding his tongue about it though.
In an interview this week with Dan Woike of the Los Angeles Times, the L.A. Lakers star Davis fired back at those attacking him over his many injuries.
“This is what I’ve learned about injuries: Last year when I wasn’t playing, people were saying ‘AD’s giving up on his team. It’s the playoffs. AD has to play. He’s got to play,’” said Davis. “And when I went out there to play, got hurt again, they said, ‘Who was his trainer? Who let him play?’
“So, what the [expletive] do you want me to do?” Davis went on. “When I play, it’s a problem. It’s a problem when I don’t play. At the end of the day, I’ve got to do what’s best for me and how my body feels. And we go from there. I’m not worried about who’s saying what or who thinks this about me because none of them have stepped on the floor and played. And the ones that did play, they should understand. These aren’t little ticky-tack injuries.”
Davis shares some other thoughts on his injury struggles in Woike’s piece. You can read it in full here.
Though Davis is now back for the Lakers, he has been limited to 39 games this season after suffering a knee sprain in December followed by an ankle sprain in February. The eight-time All-Star big was clearly hobbled during Sunday’s game against Denver, fighting through pain and discomfort in his foot, only for the Lakers to end up losing their sixth straight game.
Those criticizing Davis over an injury history that is now longer than “War and Peace” don’t exactly question the legitimacy of his ailments. Instead, they seem to be questioning Davis’ physical durability and whether he is doing all that he can to keep his body in shape and best avoid injury. Even dating back to his rookie season in New Orleans, Davis was seemingly going to the locker room with an injury every other game. As he has gotten older, the injuries have only gotten more frequent and severe, even if Davis should still be in peak physical condition at 29 years old. The Lakers’ season last year was also derailed by a groin injury that Davis suffered in the playoffs, as he hinted at in the interview.
This is simply who Davis is at this point, and he still has not played in more than 75 games in a single season over his decade-long NBA career. But as for Davis’ “the ones that did play” comment here, that may have been aimed at this retired NBA great who frequently targets Davis over his injury woes.