The opening line from ProBasketballTalk.com's Kurt Helin on the news that New Orleans Hornets rookie Anthony Davis returns Tuesday night after a near-month long absence from a sprained ankle says it all.
The 2-15 Washington Wizards can’t catch a break.
With two straight losses after stunning the Miami Heat one week ago, the Wizards figured to have a shot at their first road win of the season against the 5-14 Hornets, losers of three straight. They still do, though the challenge especially inside just became more complicated with the unibrowed shot-blocker in the mix - not to mention being down a point guard. Coverage begins Tuesday at 7:30 p.m. on Comcast SportsNet.
Davis, the former Kentucky star, missed the last 11 games. In the six games he played, the No. 1 overall pick in the 2012 draft averaged 16 points and 8 rebounds, yet it's his defensive presence that changes the dynamic most of all for the future Pelicans. According to Helin "New Orleans has given up 3.9 more points per 100 possessions in their last 9 games than they did in their first 10 (basically with and without Davis). The Hornets have the worst defense in the NBA right now and they need Davis’ length and athleticism to start turning it around."
Davis will come off the bench and likely will receive limited minutes seeing as the Hornets play at Oklahoma City on Wednesday. Of course, the Wizards will receive no minutes from the just-injured A.J. Price (fractured hand) and Trevor Ariza (claf strain) plus John Wall and Trevor Booker remain sidelined.
Ryan Anderson leads the Hornets in scoring with 18.4 points. Former University of Maryland star Greivis Vasquez is among the league leaders with 8.6 assists per game.