Markieff Morris and Glen Davis - USA TODAY Sports
The veteran big man spent much of the early part of the season getting rejected at the rim. He's managed to avoid that fate in recent games.
Glen Davis gunned with such abandon in the early part of the Orlando Magic's rebuild that his shooting became a bit of a joke. His usage rate rivaled those of perennial All-Stars like Carmelo Anthony and Russell Westbrook despite the fact that he was shooting 40.3 percent on two-pointers.
But somewhere along the way, Davis reined himself in. He still leads the Magic in shot attempts, but he no longer resembles a videogamer cheesing for his own stats. This more measured, patient approach suits Davis.
On the Magic's recent Western roadtrip, Davis shot 49.4 percent from the field and averaged 20 points per game. The bad news is that he's still trigger-happy on long two-pointers despite his poor accuracy from that range, connecting on 26.5 percent of his long twos on the roadtrip while taking nearly seven per game.
The good news--the news on which we'll focus--is that Davis is enjoying more success in the basket area. In Orlando's first five games, he was cannon fodder for opposing defenses inside, getting his shot blocked a whopping 16 times. Over the last 15 games, he's been blocked just 14 times.
The data suggest Davis is learning to finish through contact inside: in his last 10 games, he's converted 70.6 percent of his shots within the restricted circle, exceeding the league average by 10.7 percentage points. Moreover, he's augmenting his offense by drawing fouls: his current streak of six games with at least four free-throw attempts is the second-longest of his career.
A positive of leaning on Davis for offense--and yes, there's a positive, please try to take this point seriously--is that he hardly ever turns the ball over. There's real value in generating scoring opportunities without a cost in turnovers, and Davis provides that: among qualified players with a usage rate over 25 percent, Davis' turnover rate of 10.1 percent is the fifth-lowest.
The drawn fouls, improved finishing ability, and low turnovers suggest that Davis can, perhaps, provide league-average scoring efficiency at a high usage.