Anthony Davis had another huge night against the Charlotte Hornets. 40 points, 13 rebounds, and 5 assists while shooting 14-26 from the field is a monster performance. Those enormous numbers are becoming more common place; in nine games since the All-Star Break Davis has exceeded 30 points in five games for the New Orleans Pelicans. On the season Davis has exceed 30 points 14 different times; nine of those games have come since New Year's Day.
Why is New Year's Day important? That's when Jrue Holiday's strict 30 minute restriction ended. Since then these two Pelicans have truly taken flight.
Davis is shooting 50% from the floor on the season, a significant dip from 53.5% he shot last year. However, when Jrue Holiday is setting the table, there is a completely different story. On the season Davis is shooting a 55.0% after receiving a pass from Holiday; and just 48% on all other shots. Drill it down to after January 1st and the difference grows more stark. Davis shoots 61.3% off Holiday passes and 46.4% on all other shots. That includes putbacks off offensive rebounds! Let's take a deeper look at the full season data, where we can also parse out putback attempts thanks to Synergy Sports.
|Passes from Holiday||134||227||59.0%||9||29||31.0%||57.6%|
Oh boy, does Jrue Holiday make a massive difference for Anthony Davis. This is not a recent development. Davis shot 57.8% on passes from Holiday last season and 58.4% in 2013-14. Last night was no different; Davis shot 8-14 after being set up by Holiday.
Let's dive into the highlights.
Holiday has played 57 games so far this season out of a possible 63. All six missed games were a part of his back-to-back restriction during the first two months of the season. It is the most games and minutes (1556) Holiday has logged since the 2012-13 season, his last in a Philadelphia 76ers uniform.
Despite the highest usage rate (28.7%) of his career Holiday has improved his efficiency. Holiday's true shooting percentage is up to 53%, a career best. For the third consecutive season Holiday has increased both his true shooting percentage and his PER, now standing at an impressive 20.2. Need I remind Pelican fans Holiday is just 25 years old?
This roster, this franchise, is still filled with holes. However, the Pelicans and Dell Demps did well to put both Anthony Davis and Jrue Holiday in the untouchable pile at the trade deadline. A winning team requires a foundation; one which young two-way players Anthony Davis and Jrue Holiday provide.
Now, about all those other holes...