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Draft gurus have taken to comparing Anthony Davis to a young Tim Duncan, but the San Antonio Spurs stalwart can no longer call himself the best power forward on the planet.
Though, for a 36-year-old with a "DNP—Old" on his resume, he's still remarkably close to the top spot at his position.
Still, if Davis wants to send a message to his fellow power forwards, he'd do well to start with Kevin Love, whenever it is the New Orleans Hornets get around to playing the Minnesota Timberwolves. Love is well on his way to establishing himself as a bona fide superstar after appearing in the All-Star Game and averaging better than 20 points and 10 rebounds per game in each of the last two seasons.
Blake Griffin may hog the highlight reels with his high-flying dunks and acrobatic finishes, but it's Love who stands out as the better basketball player, thanks to his wide array of superb skills (passing, shooting, posting up, rebounding, etc.) and his impressive understanding of how to throw around his 6'10'', 260-pound frame to the greatest effect.
Davis, at a rail-thin 6'11'' and 220 pounds, would likely run into a heap of trouble against the stout T-Wolves standout. The presumptive No. 1 pick found life difficult enough against Thomas Robinson in the national championship game this past April, when the bruising big man out of Kansas bowled his way to 18 points and 17 rebounds.
Love, mind you, has at least 15 pounds on T-Rob and is light years ahead of the former Jayhawk as far as offensive skills are concerned.
In Davis' defense, he wasn't the only one charged with checking Robinson that night, and he might just be able to pick his spots against Love. Davis may be flimsy, but he could still bother a fair share of Love's shots with his own length and athleticism.
Those same attributes would serve Davis well on the other end of the floor, where K-Love is still somewhat lackluster, despite having been schooled in defensive principles while playing for Ben Howland at UCLA. Not that Davis would necessarily take Love to task, but rather that, with a solid point guard as his guide, he'd have at least a handful of opportunities to go up for alley-oops against his more earthbound opponent and show off the mid-range game that remained in hiding during his UK days.
At the end of the game, though, Love figures to come away with his usual 25 and 13 to best Davis' effort of, say, 14 points, nine rebounds and three blocks.