COMMENTARY | New Orleans Hornets rookie Anthony Davis has been selected to the 2013 BBVA Rising Stars Challenge. The NBA recognized Davis' outstanding first half of the season for the Hornets. The Rising Stars Challenge will take place on Friday, February 15 at 8 p.m. CT and will air live on TNT as one of the opening acts of NBA All-Star Weekend 2013.
With the Hornets occupying the cellar of the Western Conference, many NBA fans may be missing out on Anthony Davis' rookie campaign in New Orleans. Although he has missed time with two injuries, Anthony Davis has displayed his freakish athleticism on many occasions in the first half of the NBA season. Davis has one or two "wow" moments every game.
Despite missing 13 of the Hornets' first 46 games, Davis is averaging 13.0 points, 7.6 rebounds, and 1.8 blocks per game. These numbers are more impressive when considering that New Orleans coach Monty Williams is only playing Davis for just over 28 minutes per game. Although fans are frustrated with Williams' cautious approach, the Hornets are playing it safe with their 19-year-old rookie phenom in a season that will not end in a playoff berth.
2013 BBVA Rising Stars Challenge
Anthony Davis will be the Hornets' first representative in the Rising Stars Challenge since Chris Paul took part in 2007 as a sophomore. This will be the second year in a row in which Charles Barkley and Shaquille O'Neal serve as general managers. They will draft among the pool of 18 NBA rookies and sophomores.
I expect Anthony Davis to be the first or second pick of either "Team Chuck" or "Team Shaq." 2012 MVP Kyrie Irving should go first. Then the next GM will pick either the other star point guard, Damian Lillard, or Davis. At the latest, Davis should go in the second round. The BBVA Rising Stars Challenge should be a fun way to begin 2013 NBA All-Star Weekend. Last year's game was a 146-133 track meet.
If he continues to improve and the Hornets start winning in the future, it shouldn't be long before Anthony Davis starts playing in the main event of NBA All-Star Weekend.
Patrick Michael was born in New Orleans and currently resides in the Big Easy. Patrick has followed the Hornets since they moved to New Orleans and has covered the team since 2010. He was in attendance the night the Hornets were one win away from the Western Conference Finals. Follow Patrick Michael on Twitter at patmichael84.
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