There wasn’t enough time for Anthony Davis and Andre Drummond to get on the same page with the Lakers.
Before Anthony Davis went down with a groin strain in Game 4, he and Andre Drummond looked like they were starting to figure things out. In fact, in Game 3, the two-man pairing of Davis and Drummond posted a net rating of +32.3 in the 15 minutes they played together. The previous game, they posted a net rating of +12.6 in 20 minutes.
So things looked to be headed in the right direction. However, for as good as they looked in those two games — and in the final stretch of the regular season — Drummond doesn’t think they even scratched the surface of their potential as a duo.
“Not at all.” Drummond said. “There were glimpses. We all saw it. There were bright spots throughout the year where we did play together and great things happened, but you can’t expect two guys that play in the paint to get adjusted in six weeks. It’s something that’s going to take some time.
“We’ve got to have a training camp together, preseason and even the regular season to work on things like that to build that kind of chemistry. But I think he and I did a great job of adjusting well to each other with the time that we had.”
Lakers fans may look back and wonder how differently the season would have played out if Davis and Drummond had the time they needed to build that chemistry, but Drummond said he’s already put it behind him.
“I don’t really do the ‘what-ifs’ because the ‘what-ifs’ can’t be solved,” Drummond said. “Those moments are over. You can go back and think like, ‘man, what it could have been like’ but there’s nothing we can do about it. Those are injuries and situations we couldn’t foresee. The timing just wasn’t there. That’s all it boils down to.”
Drummond will now enter unrestricted free agency, where traditional, back-to-the-basket bigs have struggled to cash-in on a big paydays in recent years. It’s unlikely that Drummond will be an exception to that trend, but he’s confident that some team will value what he brings.
“I found a way to stick around this long,” Drummond said. “I’m gonna continue to play the game that I know until further notice. Every team needs a big that can rebound the ball well, play defense, and score around the rim.
“So I’m going to continue to play my game and work on parts of my game, as well to expand it when my number is called to do something differently,” Drummond continued. “I’m going to continue to play my game the way I know.”