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#pounditWednesday, December 1, 2021

Articles tagged: New Orleans Pelicans

Zion Williamson’s presence nets Pelicans 20 nationally televised games

Zion Williamson

It’s fair to say that despite the presence of Anthony Davis, the New Orleans Pelicans have not been a national TV staple in recent NBA seasons. That will change with a vengeance in 2019-20.

The NBA’s schedule release Monday revealed that the Pelicans will have 20 nationally televised games between ESPN, TNT, and ABC. Their two ABC games will be their first on that network since 2009, while three of their first five games will be shown to a national audience.

This is unprecedented for the Pelicans, and numbers like that would be more associated with big-name NBA franchises like the Los Angeles Lakers or Golden State Warriors. It’s pretty much all down to Williamson, but it’s worth remembering the young players the franchise has acquired to complement him who are excited to get a taste of playing with him.

JJ Redick agrees to two-year deal with Pelicans

The Philadelphia 76ers are losing another key piece of their roster to free agency.

According to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN, Redick has agreed to a two-year, $26.5 million deal with the New Orleans Pelicans, joining up with one of the league’s most intriguing young teams.

It’s a significant loss for the 76ers, who relied on Redick as a big part of their offense, and not just for his perimeter shooting ability. It’s also a very nice addition for the Pelicans, as Redick joins Zion Williamson, Lonzo Ball, and Brandon Ingram in the overhauled roster. They’ll contend for a playoff spot and will be one of the most interesting teams in the league to watch this season.

Report: Pelicans interested in Al Horford

Al Horford

The New Orleans Pelicans are still looking to boost their frontcourt as free agency prepares to open Sunday.

According to Marc Stein of the New York Times, the Pelicans are interested in center Al Horford, but are unsure if they will manage to be the highest bidder.

Horford raised some eyebrows on Saturday when he followed Pelicans stars Zion Williamson and Jrue Holiday on Instagram, which sparked the rumors.

The Pelicans would be expected to face stiff competition for Horford’s services, but they’re clearly in the market for a veteran big man who can play alongside Williamson. Horford would be an ideal fit, but there is the danger of them being priced out.

Report: Pelicans could have interest in Marc Gasol if he opts out

The New Orleans Pelicans may not be done with their busy offseason overhaul.

According to Fletcher Mackel of WDSU, the Pelicans have discussed pursuing center Marc Gasol if he becomes a free agent. The big catch is that Gasol would have to opt out of his contract with the Toronto Raptors, which may be unlikely.

Gasol could be a productive player, plus a veteran mentor to the likes of Zion Williamson on what will be a young squad. If nothing else, it’s a sign that the Pelicans aren’t quite done despite a very busy and successful offseason whether Gasol becomes available or not.

Alvin Gentry makes teasing reference to Anthony Davis when discussing trade haul

Alvin Gentry

The NBA world is generally in agreement that the New Orleans Pelicans did exceptionally well in resetting their franchise as a result of the Anthony Davis trade.

Pelicans coach Alvin Gentry certainly seems pleased. After all, the team landed Lonzo Ball, Brandon Ingram, and the fourth overall pick in the draft in exchange for Davis. They proceeded to flip the 4th pick for the 8th, 17th, and 35th picks, in addition to drafting Zion Williamson first overall.

Gentry was happy to remark on how well his team did — while simultaneously seeming to throw some shade Davis’ way.

During the Pelicans’ final regular season game — and his final game as a member of the team — Davis famously showed up wearing a rather fitting shirt. While funny, it’s easy to see why some with the Pelicans were a little put off by it, and now they’re willing to at least laugh about it…sort of.

Pelicans’ Twitter calls out Carolina Panthers for wishing Zion Williamson well

Zion Williamson

The New Orleans Pelicans nabbed Zion Williamson first overall in the NBA Draft on Thursday night, which led to a lot of wider attention from the sports world. Some of that attention came from a somewhat unlikely source.

As Williamson is a North Carolina native, the Carolina Panthers’ Twitter account saw fit to wish Williamson good luck after the Pelicans drafted him. The Pelicans’ Twitter account, however, was quick to ask why the NFL team hadn’t bothered congratulating any of the Charlotte Hornets’ draftees.

The New Orleans Saints, who in addition to sharing a city with the Pelicans are also the Panthers’ division rivals, wasted no time getting in on the fun.

Is it a bit excessive considering Williamson is from North Carolina? Maybe. But it’s fun, makes for some harmless Twitter drama, and increases the visibility of the accounts involved, which is the entire point.

Here is what the Pelicans turned Anthony Davis into through their trades

Anthony Davis

The New Orleans Pelicans got a haul in their trade of Anthony Davis to the Los Angeles Lakers, but that’s not all they did. They actually turned Davis into much more with another big trade on draft day. The list of what David Griffin has turned Davis into so far is so extensive we must write it up.

Here is everything Griffin acquired by trading Davis to the Los Angeles Lakers, and then by flipping the No. 4 pick they acquired from the Lakers to the Atlanta Hawks.

– Lonzo Ball
– Brandon Ingram
– Josh Hart
– No. 8 pick in 2019 Draft (via Hawks) – became Jaxson Hayes
– No. 17 pick in 2019 Draft (via Hawks) – became Nickeil Alexander-Walker
– No. 35 pick in 2019 Draft (via Hawks) – became Marcos Louzada Silva
– Top-10 protected first-round pick in 2020 NBA Draft via Cavaliers. Turns into 2021 2nd and 2022 2nd if does not convey in 2020
– First-round pick (top 8 protected) in 2021 Draft (via Lakers)
– Unprotected first-round pick in 2022 Draft via Lakers if 2021 pick does not convey
– Right to swap first-round picks with Lakers in 2023
– Unprotected first-round pick in 2024 or 2025 (via Lakers)

A few notes: the Pelicans also unloaded Solomon Hill’s contract onto the Hawks. And beyond trading Davis and Hill, the Pelicans did send Atlanta the No. 57 pick in 2019 and a future second-round pick.

Just one glance at this page and you’ll understand why Griffin might be in contention for Executive of the Year.

Atlanta Hawks acquire No. 4 pick via trade with Pelicans, plan to take De’Andre Hunter

The New Orleans Pelicans had been shopping the No. 4 overall pick in the 2019 NBA Draft ever since acquiring it as part of the Anthony Davis trade, and they apparently have found a taker.

The Atlanta Hawks are trading three picks in the 2019 draft to New Orleans and a protected 2020 first-round pick from Cleveland in order to move up to No. 4, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reports.

Here’s the breakdown of the trade, per Woj:

Hawks get: Picks Nos. 4 and 57 in 2019 draft, future second-round pick, Solomon Hill

Pelicans get: Picks Nos. 8, 17 and 35 in 2019 draft, protected first-round 2020 pick from Cleveland

The target of the Hawks is said to be De’Andre Hunter. In order to get him, they are absorbing the $12.7 million Hill is owed and giving an extra first-round pick to the Pelicans.

The Hawks made a trade last year and drafted Trae Young, who emerged as a rookie. Now they reportedly are set to pair him with Hunter, who helped lead Virginia to a national championship. They also have John Collins and Kevin Huerter, who are other players they recently drafted, and plenty of cap space moving forward.

New Orleans meanwhile continues to load up on picks after flipping the No. 4 slot they acquired from the Lakers. They will be able to make several more picks just by moving down four spots.

10 teams that need to nail the NBA Draft

Danny Ainge Celtics

The NBA Draft is important for every team. It’s a chance to bring new, young talent into the organization. Teams that consistently get it right often line themselves up for years of success. Remember, before all the Kevin Durant hoopla, the Golden State Warriors were built almost exclusively through the draft process, with both Splash Brothers among the team’s first-round picks.

However, some teams need draft success more than others. They may be facing a long rebuild if they can’t keep the continuity going, or an even longer one than they’re already in if they get things wrong. Here are ten teams that really need to nail the NBA Draft, or the futures of their franchise could get quite bleak.

10. San Antonio Spurs

It’s been two years since the Spurs made it out of the first round of the Western Conference playoffs, a rather unprecedented drought for the Gregg Popovich era. The Spurs always find players somewhere, even as they lose veterans. LaMarcus Aldridge, 34 in July, is the next big name to face the aging curve, and San Antonio really need an infusion of young talent on the roster here. This will only be the third time since the selection of Tim Duncan No. 1 that the Spurs will draft in the top 20. To keep the immensely successful run going, they need to get the 19th pick right.


Report: Pelicans want to contend next season, could trade No. 4 pick

new orleans pelicans logo

The New Orleans Pelicans will have an entirely new look next season after trading away the best player in franchise history, but that does not mean they consider themselves to be in rebuilding mode.

In addition to Lonzo Ball, Brandon Ingram and Josh Hart, the Los Angeles Lakers also sent the No. 4 overall pick in the upcoming NBA draft to New Orleans as part of their trade package for Anthony Davis. According to Marc J. Spears of The Undefeated, the Pelicans are exploring the possibility of trading that pick for a starting-caliber player before Thursday. With a core that will include the aforementioned three players and once-in-a-generation talent Zion Williamson, they believe they can contend and reach the playoffs next season.

Spears was also told by sources that Ball, Ingram and Hart are all excited for a fresh start and to play alongside Williamson. We already saw a glimpse of that with their social media activity after the big trade.

If Williamson can adjust to the NBA quickly, there’s no reason the Pelicans should be aiming for anything less than a playoff berth. The Western Conference could be wide open next season with Kevin Durant and Klay Thompson potentially missing the entire year, and New Orleans has a solid young foundation. Executive vice president of basketball operations David Griffin has a good track record with quickly building winning rosters, so it’s no surprise he is looking to do the same in his new role.