Anthony Davis Says He'd 'Take Legacy over Money' Amid LeBron James, Lakers Buzz

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured ColumnistDecember 22, 2018

New Orleans Pelicans forward Anthony Davis against the Golden State Warriors during an NBA basketball game in Oakland, Calif., Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2018. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)
Jeff Chiu/Associated Press

As he ponders the next move in his NBA career, New Orleans Pelicans star Anthony Davis indicated money won't be the driving factor.

Following the Pelicans' 112-104 loss to the Los Angeles Lakers on Friday, Davis said he would "take legacy over money," per Yahoo Sports' Chris Haynes:

"I want to have a legacy. All my people that look up to me, the younger kids, I want them to know about AD's legacy. Championships, the things I do in the community, being a good teammate, playing hard. All that stuff matters the most to me. Don't get me wrong, money is amazing. But I think in that sense, money or legacy, I think my legacy will win that battle every time."

Davis' comments are bad news for the Pelicans, who can offer him more money than any other team. The five-time All-Star can collect a supermax extension in New Orleans worth an estimated $240 million. His contract would max out at $152 million elsewhere.

Should he want to best position himself to win an NBA title, Davis' future likely lies outside of New Orleans. He's in his seventh year with the Pelicans, who have gone no further than the second round of the playoffs during that time.

LeBron James and Kevin Durant made similar decisions when they had the opportunity to hit free agency.

James signed with the Miami Heat in 2010 and then Durant joined up with the Golden State Warriors in 2016. James won two championships with the Heat, while Durant is on his way to a third title in Golden State. In both cases, they strengthened their basketball legacies by spurning the teams that selected them in the NBA draft.

Davis is eligible to hit free agency after the 2019-20 season, which was already a big story before James weighed in on the possibility of teaming up with him.

"That would be amazing," James said earlier this week, per ESPN.com's Dave McMenamin. "That would be amazing, like, duh. That would be incredible."

According to Haynes, Davis and James also had dinner following Friday's game.

As much as the speculation about Davis going to Los Angeles is intensifying, it might be a while before he's suiting up in another uniform. Pelicans head coach Alvin Gentry was adamant when speaking to reporters that the team isn't going to trade its best player.

Related

    Harden Tells Stephen A. Rockets Will Win 2020 NBA Title

    NBA logo
    NBA

    Harden Tells Stephen A. Rockets Will Win 2020 NBA Title

    Paul Kasabian
    via Bleacher Report

    AD: I Know Pels Fans Will Boo

    Davis is ready for Pelicans fans to boo him when he returns to NOLA: 'I got booed when I was still playing there'

    NBA logo
    NBA

    AD: I Know Pels Fans Will Boo

    Tyler Conway
    via Bleacher Report

    Nets Sign Iman Shumpert

    NBA logo
    NBA

    Nets Sign Iman Shumpert

    Adam Wells
    via Bleacher Report

    Report: Magic Eyeing DeMar DeRozan

    Orlando is 'scouring' the trade market and has already expressed interest in trading for DeRozan

    NBA logo
    NBA

    Report: Magic Eyeing DeMar DeRozan

    Tim Daniels
    via Bleacher Report