New Orleans Pelicans

Anthony Davis: 'The Ceiling Has No Limits for Me'

USA Today
Adam FromalNational NBA Featured ColumnistFebruary 13, 2014

Anthony Davis is well aware that he's a unique player as he heads into the first of many All-Star appearances he'll make throughout his career. 

Although the New Orleans Pelicans have struggled in the win-loss columns prior to hosting the weekend festivities in the newly renamed Smoothie King Center, Davis has absolutely dominated. According to Basketball-Reference.com, the 20-year-old big man has somehow averaged 20.5 points, 10.1 rebounds, 1.4 assists, 1.6 steals and 3.1 blocks per game with a 26.4 player efficiency rating this season. 

This has left everyone wondering one thing: Just how good can this guy get? 

Davis is already playing like a fringe MVP candidate. He's a deserving All-Star while Basketball-Reference indicates that he's posting historically excellent numbers. Moreover, he's on the verge of playing like a No. 1 scorer while remaining capable of guarding the other team's best player. 

How high does his ceiling go? Not even Davis knows. 

"Just knowing everything I did [up to] now, I’ll just do more," the Kentucky product said on The Jim Rome Show. "The ceiling has no limits for me. I’ve just got to keep working hard, keep playing hard, and keep competing and who knows what’s more to come."

One more time: "The ceiling has no limits for me." 

Now, obviously, some sort of limit exists when we're talking about how good Davis is going to be. It's not like he's going to follow an asymptotic progression and average 50 points, 30 rebounds and 20 blocks per game at some stage of his career, but that's more of a reductio ad absurdum than anything else. 

Realistically, we don't know how good Davis is going to be.

Remember that he grew up playing point guard and is still figuring out how to maximize the gifts of his lanky frame. Remember that he's only 20 years old. Remember that he's only just starting to tap into his immense potential.

Is it possible for him to lead the league in points, rebounds, steals and blocks one season?

Why not? 

That's unlikely and involves a rather optimistic take on his development, but Davis has given us no reason to doubt his growth so far. Given his quick hands, instincts and developing offensive skills, it doesn't seem as though you can just write off the possibility. 

"He's 101 games into his career and already blurring the line between possibility and reality each time he steps onto the court," SB Nation's Drew Garrison wrote at the end of January. "A 6'10" do-it-all player who's dominating the league while just beginning to learn his craft. All that potential and nothing but the stars to leap toward."

In Davis' mind, there's no ceiling to separate him from those stars. Good to hear, since it seems like just about everyone wants him to get there. 

Don't make the mistake of doubting this Pelican.

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