Anthony Davis: Kentucky Forward Will Be an All-Star in His Second Year as a Pro

Ben ChodosCorrespondent IIMay 30, 2012

NEW ORLEANS, LA - MARCH 31:  Anthony Davis #23 of the Kentucky Wildcats reacts late in the second half against the Louisville Cardinals during the National Semifinal game of the 2012 NCAA Division I Men's Basketball Championship at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome on March 31, 2012 in New Orleans, Louisiana.  (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

Anthony Davis will be making All-Star games very early on in his professional career. 

The Kentucky power forward is a complete prospect who impacts the game in many different ways.

His biggest strength is his defense and his ability to protect the rim. He led the nation in blocks during his only season with the Wildcats, posting a ridiculous 4.62 swats per game.

He also used his incredible 7’4” wingspan to record 1.4 steals per game. He is a turnover-creating machine on defense, and this will earn him the respect of coaches and fans very quickly.

His offensive game is not as impressive as his defense, but he still shows plenty of promise.

In the 2011-12 season, he averaged 14.2 points per game and was extremely efficient, shooting 62.3 percent from the field. He has the ability to back down his defender, and showed a constantly-improving jump shot throughout his brief Kentucky career.

Another facet of Davis’s game that makes him such an exciting prospect is his rebounding. He pulled down 10.4 boards per game last season. His length and jumping ability will make him an elite rebounder in the NBA, just like he was in college.

If Davis is able to make the All-Star game in his second season as a pro, he will attract comparisons to Blake Griffin, who was a starter for the Western Conference in 2012. Both players are power forwards, both were awarded National Player of the Year Honors and barring an unexpected turn of events, both will be No. 1 overall picks.

Griffin is a more explosive athlete and is bulkier than Davis. Griffin may end up being the better rebounder between the two, but both will average double-digit boards nearly every season.

Davis already has a better mid-range game than Griffin and is much better defensively. Davis is also better at the free-throw line and shot 70.9 percent, compared to Griffin’s ugly 52.1 percent mark this past year.

Davis is not capable of producing the same type of jaw-dropping highlights that Griffin can, but then again, neither is anyone else on the planet. 

Griffin is a freakish leaper, but Davis is a fantastic athlete in his own right. Davis also has a more complete game than Griffin.

Davis’s willingness to do the little things sheds light on another difference between the two players. Davis won a national championship, whereas Griffin never went past the Elite 8.

Both players were showered with individual awards, but Davis showed he had the necessary intangibles to win it all.

Davis undoubtedly had more talent around him at Kentucky, but he still showed the leadership, hustle and intensity that was necessary to push his team. Without their best player setting the tone, the Wildcats would not have won the title. 

Both players do different things very well. The biggest difference between the two is Davis’s defense.

If the Los Angeles Clippers’ star made an All-Star appearance in his second season in the NBA, then Davis will be able to do it as well.