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Old 02-28-2012, 12:58 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Ed Davis

While Kyrie Irving, John Wall and Paul George were hitting threes and dunking all over the place in the Rising Stars Challenge in Orlando last night, Ed Davis was chilling in Toronto. Heading into his sophomore season, it wasn’t supposed to be like this. Davis earned lofty expectations with the way he finished his rookie campaign, averaging 13 points, nine rebounds, and 58% shooting in 34 minutes a game in April. This year, under coach Dwane Casey, he’s down to six and six on 49% shooting in under 23 minutes. These numbers mean Davis can’t act surprised that the league’s assistant coaches deemed 21 others more deserving. “I take it as motivation, “ he said. “With the shortened season and the new coach, it’s been somewhat of a tougher transition than some of the other guys or whatever, but I’m learning from it.”

Davis learned his earliest basketball lessons from his father, Terry, who spent over a decade in the NBA with the Heat, Mavericks, Wizards and Nuggets. These days, Terry still talks to his son every couple of days, but he’s at a distance, letting him be his own man. “I know a couple of guys whose dads want to be so controlling, want to live with them and control their money,” he said. “My dad, he just let me live and if I ever have a question he’s always there.” Terry’s role wasn’t always played in the background, however.

Suiting up against the Pistons this past Wednesday, Davis encountered more than a familiar face — he found himself looking into the eyes of a man he’s looked up to since he was five years old. To say that Ben Wallace is close to Davis’ family isn’t strong enough for Wallace. “We are family,” Wallace firmly proclaimed. “Me and his father was like brothers.” Not only were Wallace and Terry Wizards teammates, they were both undrafted out of Virginia Union and live nearby in Richmond, VA. “He’s like my nephew,” Wallace said of Davis. “I’ve been knowing him almost all his life and been around him for so long, so I consider him family.” Wallace first envisioned Davis as a pro when he was in high school. “I’d seen how close he started to hang out with his daddy,” he said. “They used to work out together, get up in the morning and go run a couple of miles. For a high school kid, that’s huge to be able to have that type of discipline where you’re going to get up in the morning and go run.”
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