Anthony Davis returned to the New Orleans Pelicans on Friday night. It was his first game since suffering a finger injury in mid-January, and of course, it was the first time the superstar big man took the floor since the NBA’s trade deadline passed on Thursday afternoon. While Davis requested a trade, that was unable to come to fruition, and now, the remainder of the season will occur with AD in New Orleans.
This, understandably, creates a bit of an awkward situation. Because the Pelicans are going to limit how much he plays rather than bench him and get fined by the league, that means this sort of thing will happen.
Davis was booed by the New Orleans faithful during introductions and for portions of their game on Friday, a 122-117 victory over the Minnesota Timberwolves in which Davis had 32 points, nine rebounds, and three blocks in 25 minutes, none of which came in the fourth quarter. After the game, Davis met with the assembled media and explained that he found getting booed by Pelicans fans odd.
“That was definitely awkward,” Davis said, according to Michael C. Wright of ESPN. “Boo? OK. It doesn’t matter to me. I’m going to go out there and play basketball. I was [surprised]. But hey, that’s life, man. Some people are not gonna like me. I’m just happy to be back on the floor playing the game that I love.”
In fairness to New Orleans fans, they did cheer Davis, too — Pelicans point guard Tim Frazier told ESPN he “heard more cheers than boos.” But as every person knows, a million compliments can be drowned out by a single insult, so naturally, the big story is getting booed.
Perhaps this was just something that Pelicans fans needed to get out of their systems, and as the season marches towards its conclusion, things will smooth over. We’ll know for sure if that’s the case during New Orleans’ next home game on Feb. 12 against Orlando.