As the NBA continues it’s hiatus, let’s look back into Houston Rockets’ history and point out the time Clint Capela outperformed Anthony Davis on today’s date, two years ago.
When the Houston Rockets squared off against the New Orleans Pelicans on March 24th, 2018, the matchup everyone overlooked was Clint Capela vs. Anthony Davis. Davis was going to be defended by Capela, and AD is obviously one of the best in the league, which is why most people around the league ignored the matchup.
The game had the look of a potential playoff series, as the Pelicans had a record of 43-31, while the Rockets boasted the league’s best record, as they were 59-14. The Capela/Davis matchup was a tale of the tape, and it almost had the look of David and Goliath.
Capela had never made an All-Star team, while Davis made his fifth consecutive All-Star appearance that season. Although most expected Davis to dominate Capela in the matchup, Capela actually outplayed Davis, and helped lead the Rockets to a 114-91 victory.
Clint Capela (18p, 16r, 6b, 3s, W) & Anthony Davis (25p, 8r, 4b, 2s) duel in Houston! pic.twitter.com/FUJNrC1CxE
— NBA (@NBA) March 25, 2018
Sure, Davis scored 25 points compared to Capela’s 18, but Davis needed ten more shots to get there, as he went 10-of-22 from the field (45.5 percent), compared to Capela’s 9-of-12 (75 percent). Capela also had twice as many rebounds, as he hauled in 16 boards, compared to AD’s eight rebounds.
Capela also posted a true shooting percentage of 69.9 percent, while Davis had a true shooting percentage of 50.7 percent. Although Capela was much more efficient than AD and was much more of a force on the glass, perhaps the most impressive feats from Capela came on the defensive end.
The Switzerland native had three steals, compared to Davis’ two steals, and recorded a career-high six blocks, including one on Davis himself. On the flip side, Davis registered four blocks, although he actually played more minutes than Capela (30 compared to 28).
Capela posted an offensive rating of 134 points per 100 possessions, compared to Davis, who posted an offensive rating of 104 points per 100 possessions. On the flip side, the Rockets allowed only 62 points per 100 possessions with Capela, compared to the Pelicans allowing 96 points per 100 possessions with Davis on the floor.
On top of that, the Rockets were 17 points better with Capela on the floor, while the Pels were actually 11 points worse with Davis on the floor. This was actually the second-worst out of all Pelicans’ starters, whereas Capela was second-best among all Rockets starters.
It’s universally accepted that Davis is better on both ends of the floor, but on that day Capela was by far the better player, which played a large part in the Rockets walking away with the victory.