Alvin Gentry says Tyreke Evans won’t be ready for start of 2016-17 season
The New Orleans Pelicans were torn apart at the seams by injury last season, and their luck still doesn’t appear to be getting any better.
In an appearance on The Lowe Post podcast with ESPN’s Zach Lowe on Friday, Pelicans head coach Alvin Gentry said that guard Tyreke Evans will not be ready for the start of the 2016-17 season.
“He won’t be ready for the start of the season,” Gentry said, per Brett Dawson of the New Orleans Advocate. “He’s in a rehab situation. I think for us, we just got to move forward with our season, and then if he comes back and he’s able to help us, I think that just adds icing to the cake.”
Evans, 26, averaged 15.2 points per game, 5.2 rebounds per game, and 6.6 assists per game last year but was only healthy enough to suit up in 25 games for New Orleans. The former No. 4 overall pick was ruled out for the remainder of the season in February when he underwent his third right knee surgery in nine months and is apparently still very much in recovery.
While obviously a meaningful contributor to the team, Evans has had a tendency to drive the Pelicans’ offense into the ground with his chaotic dribbling and his high volume of touches. Being without Evans for the opening part of next season may not be entirely to New Orleans’ detriment, as they will be able to find more playing time for Buddy Hield, their No. 6 overall selection in last month’s draft, as well as new free agent additions Langston Galloway and E’Twaun Moore. But having gone 30-52 last year, they’re going to need everyone healthy for the upward climb back into the Western Conference playoff picture, let alone the lofty assessment Evans himself had of the team just last offseason.
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H/T NBA Reddit