Any grandiose expectations levied on Anthony Davis were fulfilled Sunday afternoon.
As the rest of the starting lineup in New Orleans combined to score just 19 points, Davis lifted the team to its fourth victory in the last five games and obliterating the franchise scoring record in the process.
The Pelicans captured a 111-106 victory as Davis directly impacted 61.3 percent of the total points scored by the team.
Davis became the seventh member of the 50-point club this season, joining Stephen Curry, DeMarcus Cousins, Jimmy Butler, Kemba Walker, Damien Lillard and James Harden, with his 59 point, 20 rebound, four assist one block effort.
The point total and made field goals (24) by Davis were the most submitted by any player this season and be managed to pour in nine more points than Jamal Mashburn, the franchise record holder for points in a game by a Hornets player, as he tallied 50 during an overtime win against Chicago on Nov. 12, 1994.
Four years into his career, Davis is already the franchise leader in blocks, while ranking third in points, rebounds and steals.
Detroit simply ran out of answers for Davis, as he showcased his wide array of talents on the offensive end. The 22-year-old connected twice from 3-point range, converted eight mid-range jumpers and managed to rock the rim.
Along with his gaudy scoring statistics, Davis took the task of facing Detroit center Andre Drummond, the leading rebounder in the NBA this season, very seriously.
The first overall pick of the 2012 NBA Draft set the tone early, as he managed to pull down nine rebounds in the first 15 minutes of the game.
Davis managed to surpass his previous career-high of 43 points — a total he has reached on three occasions — early in the fourth quarter by hitting a mid-range jumper to restore the advantage for New Orleans.
Nineteen of his points came in the fourth quarter, as the former Kentucky star converted 6-of-7 attempts from the field.
All season long, Davis has been tasked with the burden of carrying New Orleans back into the post season, but has struggled to get the team into contention with the numerous injuries the team faced.
Even after his exceptional effort Sunday afternoon, the Pelicans still remain 11 games under .500 and need to beat out Sacramento, Utah and Houston for the final playoff berth in the Western Conference.
The Pelicans are going to play the remainder of the season without point guard Tyreke Evans, the third leading scorer on the team at 15.2 points per game, after undergoing a third surgical procedure on his right knee in the past 10 months.
Jrue Holiday was the only other player on the roster to score in double figures Sunday afternoon, as he scored 20 points, but shot 6-of-14 from the field. Ryan Anderson, the second leading scorer on the team, connected on just 1-of-12 attempts from the field, forcing Davis to lift the team offensively.
The Pelicans kept feeding the ball into Davis, resulting in a career-high 34 shot attempts. Prior to Sunday, Davis had attempted 30 shots just once in 247 career appearances.
By enabling Davis to attack the basket in a variety of ways, as was given enough space to create his own offense off the dribble or simply pull-up and bury a jump shot. The Pistons geared their entire defensive effort into stopping Davis, but managed to force him to miss just 10 shots.
When the final buzzer sounded, Davis became the 20th player in league history to score at least 59 points in a single game.
New Orleans has played twice since the All-Star break, with Davis emerging as the most unstoppable scorer in the league.
Friday against Philadelphia, Davis poured in 34 points as he earned a season-high 20 trips to the foul line.
Davis has averaged 46.5 points on 59.9 percent shooting from the field, 13.5 rebounds and 1.5 blocks per game.
The team has 27 contests remaining and the domination of Davis could just be starting.