He's not doing a very good job of earning that respect.
The radio interview Davis did last week with KFXX in Portland is making the rounds around the blogosphere, as it's easy fodder for those looking to psychoanalyze the Celtics' reserve forward. Davis admitted that he'd hired a sports psychologist to help him "tap into the zone," and that raised a few eyebrows, no doubt.
But that's not really the interesting part of Davis' comments last week. So the guy sees a shrink. Big deal! Sports psychologists are part of the game. Red Sox catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia credited the work of Tom Hanson in helping Salty cure a case of the "yips" — trouble throwing the ball back to the pitcher — last year. Lots of guys see them, and lots of guys are better for it. Davis is right to say that every athlete, including LeBron James, can benefit from seeing one.
But there are some other, more troubling quotes that Davis dropped in his radio interview. Such as…
- "A lot of players are affected in ways that you would probably never even imagine, even little things a coach says or little things off the court, teammates."
- "I'm a big 'No' guy. When somebody tells me 'No,' I go the opposite way."
- "Mentally, I wasn't there [in the postseason]. I had to kind of adjust the way I played in the second half of the season, and mentally, I didn't get a rhythm."
- "You miss a shot, you don't worry about that. You go to the other end and use that energy to do something else on defense. Let it pass like a cloud. Clouds pass by you all the time, and you don't worry about it."
This stuff smacks of pretty much every quality you don't want to see in your four-year veteran, going on five. Glen Davis sounds petty, oversensitive, uncoachable, unreliable and lazy. In other words, Glen Davis sounds like he's a Baby again. A Baby who would probably be better off keeping his mouth shut.
It may be true that players are affected by little things with coaches and teammates. But that's not something Davis, who's been maligned for his whiny ways, should be saying publicly.
Likewise, it may be true that Davis doesn't care about missing shots. But he shouldn't share that, either. Because he should care about missing shots. He's consistently ranked among the league's lowest-percentage shooters from all over the floor, and he doesn't seem to be making any mental notes about changing that.
These comments sound stubborn. Davis is supposed to be evolving as a player, learning how to carry himself better. This reads like a relapse. Suddenly, he's the same clueless kid the Celtics drafted back in 2007.
Maybe the shrink will help. But he's sure got a lot of work to do. Because at the moment, Davis sounds like a complete head case, far closer to a Big Baby than a big-name free agent.