Fayetteville's Davis now an established veteran for the ABA's Atlanta Vision

Tue, 11/20/2007 - 11:55am
By: Michael Boylan

Last year, Fayetteville resident Kelvin Davis was the ABA’s oldest rookie. This year, Davis, a point guard for the Atlanta Vision, is simply the oldest player. Age ain’t nothing but a number for Davis, 48, and his fans, and he is looking forward to getting more playing time this season and proving that the game has not passed him by.

Davis’ return to the team was made official in September when team owner Quentin Townsend called him and told him to return to camp. Davis had spent all summer training and keeping in shape. While there wouldn’t be as much pressure as last year’s camp, where his future was uncertain, Davis stated that this year’s camp was just as demanding physically and he still had to produce.

One thing that has helped is having built some chemistry with the team last year.

“There are some newcomers to the team, but it is a lot of the guys I played with last year,” Davis said.

It is a big boost for Davis to play with people who saw him in action last year. Although his playing time was limited, Davis was still able to make his mark in games. Among the highlights for Davis were his first game in the ABA and two games in Wilmington, NC. Davis got his first taste of ABA basketball in the final two and a half minutes of a home game.

“I checked that my glasses and knee braces were in the right place and took the court,” Davis recalled. “There was a buzz around the arena and people were all shouting ‘Old School’ (Davis’nickname) is coming in.” Davis grabbed three rebounds in a row, got an assist and hit two free throws in his limited time on the court that night. After the game, he was swarmed by reporters asking questions and kids asking for autographs.
The games in Wilmington were against the top team in the league and Davis saw a lot of playing time. He played 12 minutes in the first game, a loss, but followed it up with a start and a win. Davis impressed the opposing players and fans with his defense and rebounding, skills that he considers to be his strengths and what keeps him in the game.

His story has struck a chord with the media. He has appeared on CNN and also on CBS, NBC and Fox affiliates around the southeast. The story has also garnered enough interest for a movie to be produced locally. Davis stated that the script is being finished now and auditions for roles could take place as early as December. Davis loves playing the game and competing, but sharing his story is a benefit for him as well.

“If my story can help motivate others to pursue their dreams, then I’m happy,” Davis said.
There has to be a lot of motivating factors for Davis, because the schedule can be very demanding. Not only does he put in a full work day with his job, but that typically comes after practice or training, and then there are the games that take place after work, as well as the games that take him and his team on the road, as well as the time to spend with his wife, Stephanie, and his children.

Davis hopes to continue playing until he is 50 years old, but realizes that his basketball future may be in mentoring young players in the ABA and NBA.

“I’m just going to enjoy the ride and see how long I can keep it up,” Davis said.

For information on the team, their schedule and tickets, visit www.atlvision.com

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