Anthony Davis said the Los Angeles Lakers “have a chance to do something special” after scoring 31 points to lead his team to a Game 2 victory over the Portland Trail Blazers.
NBA first-round playoff games live on Sky Sports
- Gm 3: Clippers @ Mavericks | Saturday 2am | Sky Sports Arena
- Gm 3: Heat @ Pacers | Saturday 8:30pm | Sky Sports Arena
- Gm 4: Celtics @ 76ers | Sunday 6pm | Sky Sports Arena
- Gm 4: Lakers @ Trail Blazers | Tuesday 2am | Sky Sports Arena
After losing Game 1 on Tuesday, the Lakers restored parity in the first-round series with a resounding 111-88 win on Thursday night.
Davis made 13 of his 24 shots, including 3-of-4 from three-point range, and pulled down 11 rebounds.
“We have got a chance to do something special this year,” Davis said. “All LeBron (James) and (Rajon) Rondo talk about is, ‘it doesn’t come around often’, when you have a great team that can compete for a championship. We want to take advantage of our opportunities and this team we have and try to reach our goal – that’s to win.
“We wanted to come out aggressive tonight and play with a sense of desperation – we did that. Guys made shots tonight and shot the ball with a lot of confidence. We played with a sense of urgency and were able to get the win.”
After being upset in the series opener, Davis revealed the Lakers fell back on a mantra that has motivated them all season and led them to the No 1 seed in the Western Conference.
“You never want to go down 0-2 in a series. Our mantra this entire season has been ‘never lose two in a row’ – that was our mindset coming into the game,” he said.
After defensive lapses cost the Lakers in the final minutes of Game 1, the Lakers redoubled their efforts in Game 2 to limit shooting to 40 per cent from the field and a meagre 27.6 per cent from three-point range.
Davis was asked about the keys to limited Portland’s high-scoring offense and said: “Stopping Dame (Lillard) and CJ (McCollum). Those two guys can get going at any time and our bigs and guards did a great job of containing them.
They got to the [free throw] line a lot in Game 1, especially early and then got going.
“We tried to limit their free throw attempts and their threes. We tried to make them beat us with twos and we did a good job of that tonight. We have got to have that same defensive effort for the rest of the series.”
Davis, whose limited playoff experience came as a member of the New Orleans Pelicans, admitted he is enjoying playing for a title-contending team in the postseason.
“We have got a chance to win [the championship],” he said. “We try to go out and do things other teams can’t do. We have such a talented team and we still try to play scrappy. When you have a team that is talented and can play scrappy, it is very tough to beat them.”