Pelicans improving as Anthony Davis continues to grow

Heading into 2014, the New Orleans Pelicans are a much better team at this point in the season than they were last year during their incarnation as the Hornets.

Last season, New Orleans averaged 93 points per game at home. The Pelicans have increased that by more than 10 points per game so far in 2013-14. In fact, the team ranks third in Points Per Game Improvement this season, just behind the Phoenix Suns and Minnesota Timberwolves.

Largest Improvement in Home PPG

2012-13    2013-14              Diff

Phoenix Suns                         94.6             107.4             +12.8

Minnesota Timberwolves        96.0             107.2            +11.2

New Orleans Pelicans            93.0             103.4             +10.4

Chalk up the improvement to a revamped roster loaded with scoring threats and a more mature Anthony Davis, who continues to grow both on and off the court.

Since returning from a fractured hand that caused him to miss 7 games, Davis seems stronger than ever, just in time to make his case for the February All Star Game in New Orleans. Davis now ranks 7th in balloting for the Western Conference Front Court.

1.         Kevin Durant (OKC) 850,728

2.         Dwight Howard (Hou) 408,623

3.         Blake Griffin (LAC) 399,357

4.         Kevin Love (Min) 377,941

5.         Tim Duncan (SA) 312,809

6.         LaMarcus Aldridge (Por) 282,613

7.         Anthony Davis (NO) 188,589

8.         Pau Gasol (LAL) 177,883

9.         Andre Iguodala (GS) 145,089

10.       Dirk Nowitzki (Dal) 126,025

11.       Chandler Parsons (Hou) 106,369

12.       DeMarcus Cousins (Sac) 99,903

13.       David Lee (GS) 89,858

14.       Omer Asik (Hou) 79,591

15.       Kawhi Leonard (SA) 76,110

In each of Davis' three games since returning from that broken hand, he's scored 20 or more points and recorded nine or more rebounds.

Anthony Davis in 2013-14

​1st 16 Games       Last 3 Games

PPG​  18.8                    22.0 (66/3)

RPG​  10.2                    10.7 (32/3)

FG%               .498                  .522 (24/46)

Davis has also now passed the Pacers' Roy Hibbert to claim the NBA's #1 spot for blocked shot, with 3.16 per game.