They call him Mister 57.

On a Sunday afternoon last March inside a sold-out Portland Expo, Trey Davis poured in a franchise-record 57 points in a game against the Lakeland Magic.

Maine Red Claws guard Trey Davis drives the ball up the court during Sunday’s game against the Grand Rapids Drive at the Portland Expo. Portland Press Herald photo by Carl D. Walsh

The slender guard scored on drives. He rained down 3-pointers with his unique push-from-the-shoulder style. He drew fouls and scored from the line.

Fans of all ages embraced Davis in part because his size (generously listed as 6-0, 180 pounds) is closer to theirs, but also because of his smile and obvious delight that he makes his living by playing a game.

The Claws, in the midst of a 10-game losing streak to end their season, fell short of winning that record-breaking game when an off-balance, desperation 3-point attempt by Davis that would have tied the score was off the mark.

A year later he’s back with the Claws, but in a bench role. Ahead of him on the depth chart are P.J. Dozier and R.J. Hunter, both signed to two-way contracts with the Celtics.


“I just enjoy being part of the organization,” Davis said. “This area, this community, there are nice, friendly people here.”

In Sunday night’s makeup game against the Grand Rapids Drive, Davis played 12 minutes and didn’t score. He was the fourth player off the bench for the Claws, who saw their three-game winning streak end in a 102-97 loss before a crowd of 1,802.

In his first stint, Davis got flattened by a pick set at midcourt by the Drive’s 7-foot center Johnny Hamilton, who outweighs Davis by 50 pounds. In the second half, Davis stayed on the court for eight minutes. He made a nifty half-court bounce pass to Andrew White for a layup that turned into a three-point play as part of what appeared to be a decisive 13-3 run to open the fourth quarter. The Claws led 88-75 when Davis left.

Grand Rapids, led by a 42-point effort from 31-year-old Marcus Thornton, outscored Maine 27-9 down the stretch.

At 17-24, Maine has matched its victory total of last season with nine games remaining. It seems almost certain the Claws will not make playoffs for the second year in a row after a run of three straight Atlantic Division titles.

“We haven’t really talked about wins and losses or playoffs or where we’re at in the standings,” coach Brandon Bailey said. “All we’ve really focused on is developing into winning basketball players.”


Davis came late to this edition of the Claws. He played Summer League with the Celtics and found an opportunity overseas, playing pro ball in Poland.

“I enjoyed it,” Davis said. “I liked the basketball. I liked the culture. I liked the people. I liked a lot of things about it. So going back (overseas) is definitely in my plans.”

After his first paycheck came a little late, and the second a little later, he began to wonder if something was amiss. Turns out the team had lost one of its main sponsors. Davis conferred with his agent and decided to leave.

“Initially I wanted to go somewhere else in Europe,” Davis said, “but there were things in my contract such that I wasn’t able to do that yet. So instead of waiting there, I wanted to come back to the States, and see my friends and family.”

Celtics guard Marcus Smart and Davis have been buddies since second grade, growing up together in Texas. Between Friday night and Sunday afternoon games at the Expo, Davis went to Boston and stayed with Smart. They talk basketball. They talk life.

Davis rejoined the Red Claws in late January, when White and Vitto Brown were the only holdovers from last year’s club. Sunday marked his ninth game with Maine. His high point game is 12. On Sunday he contributed five rebounds and a steal.

“It’s been hard because I haven’t been out there as much as I’m accustomed to,” Davis said. “At the same time you have to stay motivated, stay level- headed.”

His confidence has never wavered.

“When I go home I think I’m the greatest player in the world,” he said. “So I don’t necessarily lose sleep about this. I know I have a bright future ahead of me once I leave here.”

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