New Orleans Pelicans 2014 Draft Overview
Round 2, Pick 47, Russ Smith, PG, Louisville (via trade with Philadelphia 76ers)
4-7-14: The Pelicans have been a streaky team as they head into April. On Friday, they extended their winning streak to five games with a 102-95 victory over the Utah Jazz. Tyreke Evans’ 22 points and 15 assists were both game-highs as New Orleans moved to just eight games below .500. Unfortunately, the Pelicans could not win another game this past week. Anthony Davis missed Saturday’s contest at San Antonio, and New Orleans fell by 16 points. He returned to the court on Monday, but his efforts were not enough as the Pelicans lost by five points. The week did not end on a good note as the Denver Nuggets blew out the Pelicans.
4-1-14: How about these Pelicans? They played four projected playoff teams and posted a perfect 4-0 week. On Friday and Saturday, it was the Anthony Davis show. He put up game-highs in both points and rebounds. The first contest was in Atlanta, and it was a six-point victory for the Pelicans. The second half of the back-to-back set was a home game against the two-time defending champion Miami Heat, and New Orleans won that contest by double digits. On Monday, the Pelicans continued their perfect record in overtime as they beat the Brooklyn Nets, 109-104. Then on Wednesday, New Orleans beat the Los Angeles Clippers without Brian Roberts, Eric Gordon and Austin Rivers.
3-24-14: The Pelicans finished their six-game homestand this past week. Each of the games finished with single-digit margins, but New Orleans only won one of them. Anthony Davis dominated the games on Friday and Sunday. Although the Pelicans lost to the Portland Trail Blazers by eight points on Friday, Davis scored a game-high 36 points. Then on Sunday, the Celtics forced overtime with a Kris Humphries buzzer-beater, but Davis led the way to the victory in overtime as he set new career-highs in points and rebounds. Unfortunately, Davis sat out on Wednesday due to an illness, and the Pelicans fell to the Toronto Raptors by seven points.
3-17-14: Anthony Davis is leading the Pelicans to more victories as the regular season approaches its final month. He put up game-highs in points and rebounds in each of the team’s three games this past week. On Friday, the Pelicans beat the Milwaukee Bucks, 112-104, behind his 29 points and 14 rebounds. Then on Sunday, Davis matched his career-high in points in New Orleans’ 111-107 overtime win over the Denver Nuggets. The Pelicans then received two days of rest before facing the Memphis Grizzlies on Wednesday. Unfortunately, New Orleans could not make it four wins a row as the Pelicans lost, 90-88.
3-10-14: The Pelicans finally got a victory this past week. Heading into Tuesday’s game at the Staples Center, New Orleans was on its second eight-game losing streak of the season. The Pelicans then defeated the Los Angeles Lakers, 132-125, to end their five-game road trip. Anthony Davis had a very strong night in that victory. His 28 points and 15 rebounds led the way for the Pelicans. Before that contest, New Orleans had lost its previous three games by an average of 17 points per game. Those three losses were to the Phoenix Suns, Los Angeles Clippers and Sacramento Kings.
3-3-14: This is just getting frustrating for the Pelicans. However, Anthony Davis has been playing very well. Although the Charlotte Bobcats held on to beat Pelicans, 90-87, on Friday, Davis put up 18 points, a game-high 13 rebounds and four blocks. On Saturday, Davis had another game-high in rebounds, but the Pelicans lost by one point to the Washington Wizards. Davis put up 26 points on Monday against the visiting Los Angeles Clippers, but the Pelicans fell, 123-110. Davis could not keep it close on Wednesday because he encountered a shoulder injury in the first quarter. New Orleans lost to the Dallas Mavericks, 108-89.
2-24-14: Anthony Davis represented the Pelicans very well as he played in the Rising Stars Challenge and All-Star game. On Friday, he started and scored 16 points to go along with eight rebounds, four assists, three steals and two blocks. Then, he came off the bench to score double-digit points two days later. Davis is a player with one of the brightest futures in the NBA. However, he could not lift the Pelicans past the visiting New York Knicks on Wednesday. In such a difficult Western Conference, the Pelicans are out of playoff contention and are readying their squad for 2014-15. They have been devastated by injuries this season and should be a stronger team within a couple years.
2-18-14: The Pelicans finished their homestand by rallying back from a double-digit deficit to defeat the Minnesota Timberwolves. Anthony Davis, who will replace Kobe Bryant in the All-Star game, led New Orleans with 26 points and 10 rebounds as the Pelicans made their best fourth-quarter comeback of the season. However, they then had to go on the road. The Pelicans fell by 12 points on Sunday at Brooklyn. Although Tyreke Evans scored a game-high 23 points the following night, the Raptors defeated the Pelicans, 108-101. The Pelicans did bounce back through. On Wednesday, they beat the Milwaukee Bucks, 102-98.
2-10-14: The Pelicans have been playing very good basketball recently after they had a frustrating losing streak in January. With two more wins this past week, they have been victorious in five of their last seven games. On Saturday, New Orleans hosted the Chicago Bulls. Behind a game-high 24 points and six blocks from newly-named all-star Anthony Davis, the Pelicans won by nine points. Although the Pelicans fell to the San Antonio Spurs on Monday, they bounced back to beat the Atlanta Hawks by five points on Wednesday behind another strong performance from Davis. His 27 points and 10 rebounds led the way for New Orleans that night.
2-4-14: Although the Pelicans do not seem like they will be able to make the playoffs this season, they are showing some promise for the next few seasons. On Friday, they came back from a 16-point deficit as Eric Gordon hit a game-winning bucket with just 1.9 seconds remaining to beat the Detroit Pistons. Then on Sunday, Tyreke Evans’s team-high 23 points and Anthony Davis’s career-high 19 rebounds led New Orleans to the 100-92 win over the Magic. Davis kept it going on Tuesday as he blocked eight shots in the victory over the Cavaliers in Cleveland. However, he sat out Wednesday’s game against the Minnesota Timberwolves with a dislocated finger, and the Pelicans lost by 11 points.
1-27-14: Yet another Pelican is out for an extended period of time: on Saturday, the Pelicans announced that center Jason Smith is out indefinitely due to cartilage damage in his right knee. New Orleans also made a trade this past week: the team acquired Tyshawn Taylor in exchange for the draft rights to Edin Bavcic. The Pelicans subsequently waived Taylor because they did not have enough room on their roster. On the court, New Orleans continued its longest losing streak of the season with a double-digit loss to the Golden State Warriors. The Pelicans did get a much-needed victory on Monday in Memphis before losing by 17 points to Sacramento Kings.
1-20-14: The Pelicans just cannot catch a break this season. First, Anthony Davis, the team’s most dynamic player, missed a couple of weeks in December. Then, in January, they have lost two more of their starters. Ryan Anderson, the team’s leading scorer, and Jrue Holiday, New Orleans’ top assist man, have gone down with injuries and do not expect to return any time soon. As expected, the Pelicans have struggled on the court without them. They have lost their last seven games, which is by far their longest losing streak this season. In addition, it is currently the longest losing streak in the Western Conference. On the bright side, the Pelicans lost by just three points to the Houston Rockets on Wednesday, and Eric Gordon put up 35 points, the most he has scored in a New Orleans jersey.
1-7-14: After a rough road stretch in mid-December, the Pelicans have struggled to get their record back to .500. However, they did get an important victory this past week. After winning by 16 points at home against the Denver Nuggets and losing to the Rockets by nine in Houston, New Orleans upset the Portland Trail Blazers on Monday. Jrue Holiday scored a season-high 31 points to go with 13 assists and seven rebounds. In addition, Tyreke Evans hit a mid-range jumper with 1.2 seconds left to win the game. Then, Eric Gordon returned from a three-game absence on Wednesday, but the Pelicans fell to the Minnesota Timberwolves.
12-30-13: After losing by just three points in Portland on Saturday, New Orleans traveled to Sacramento to face the Kings two days later. In his first game since leaving the capital of California, Tyreke Evans scored 25 points, grabbed six rebounds and dished off 12 assists in the Pelicans’ 13-point victory. Jrue Holiday also recorded his eighth double-double of the season in the win over the Kings, as he put up 17 points and 10 assists. Anthony Davis has continued his strong play as well. He totaled 42 points and 20 rebounds in the two games this past week. The Pelicans will have to build off this victory to put them in a position to fight for a playoff spot.
12-22-13: All of a sudden, Anthony Davis is back. He surprised everyone, as he came off the bench to score 24 points and grab 12 rebounds in 32 minutes on Wednesday at the Staples Center. Although the Pelicans lost by 13 points to the Los Angeles Clippers, Davis registered the 30th double-double of his young career. With that loss, the Pelicans own an 11-13 record on the season. Therefore, it will be difficult for them to make it to the postseason. In order to put up a fight, they will need a lot of production from Davis as well as Ryan Anderson, who has scored double-digit points in every game that he has played this season.
12-13-13: The Pelicans continue to hang around .500 even without rising star Anthony Davis. They split their two games this past week. The Oklahoma City Thunder defeated New Orleans by 14 points on Friday, but the Pelicans got some solid scoring from their bench that night. Tyreke Evans and Anthony Morrow each scored at least 10 points in fewer than 20 minutes played. Then on Wednesday, Jason Smith had arguably the best game of his career. The 27-year-old big man from Colorado scored 22 points and grabbed 16 rebounds en route to the Pelicans victory over the Detroit Pistons in overtime. It marked the first time in Smith’s career that he totaled at least 15 points and 15 rebounds in an NBA contest.
12-7-13: Unfortunately for the Pelicans, this past week was one that will affect their chances at making the 2014 NBA playoffs. After Eric Gordon scored a game-high 26 points to beat the Philadelphia 76ers on Friday, the Pelicans traveled to New York. Even though New Orleans defeated the Knicks by four points, they lost Anthony Davis to an injury. His non-displaced fracture in his left hand has put the team in a tough position. Ryan Anderson stepped up that night at Madison Square Garden and led all scorers with 31 points. The Pelicans beat the Chicago Bulls in overtime the next night, but then dropped a game to the Dallas Mavericks. It will be difficult for the Pelicans to stay above .500 without Davis.
11-28-13: The 6-8 New Orleans Pelicans just seem to love streaks. The team has lost their last two games (Spurs and Warriors) but before that they had won three games, then before that lost three and won the two before that. Following? The Pelicans will look to end the losing streak portion on Friday night when they face off against the struggling Philadelphia 76ers. It will be Jrue Holiday’s first return to Philadelphia since the offseason trade, which is sure to be met with plenty of indifference from the Philly crowd.
11-22-13: Despite having the league’s easiest ranked schedule through 11 games, the Pelicans are holding a record of just 5-6. Struggling to find their identity after bringing in Jrue Holiday and Tyreke Evans, New Orleans does a lot of things pretty well, but nothing great. NOLA has won their last two games over the 76ers and Jazz (possibly the two worst teams in the league), to bring their record back to respectability. Anthony Davis is showing his superstar potential and the return of Ryan Anderson from injury is helping the team’s spacing issues. As the team’s schedule starts to even out a bit, it will be vital that the Pelicans start getting their new pieces to mesh.
11-15-13: It’s all about the awesomeness of Anthony Davis in New Orleans, as the second-year phenom continues to do it all for the young Pelicans. Unfortunately, that hasn’t exactly translated into wins, as the 3-6 Pelicans aren’t playing consistent defense. The low came when New Orleans blew a 16-point lead to give the previously winless Utah Jazz their first win of the year.
11-8-13: Anthony Davis has been every bit the machine he was hyped up to be in his second season and has shown to be more than reason enough for fans to get Pelicans tickets in 2013. Unfortunately, Davis can only do so much, as the Pelicans have started 2013 just 2-3. Regardless, there is a good amount of optimism with a loaded roster, as the Pelicans are expected to push for a playoff spot this season.
11-1-13: Anthony Davis led the Pelicans to a 7-1 record in the preseason, the second-best record of any team in the NBA. As Monty Williams enters his fourth season as coach of the New Orleans franchise, he now has a revamped team from last year. The Pelicans are proud of the acquisitions of Jrue Holiday and Tyreke Evans this past offseason in addition to the signings of Anthony Morrow and Greg Stiemsma. Holiday and Morrow both impressed in the preseason, so they will also be players to watch for in 2013-14 as the team tries to avoid a third straight season out of the playoffs.
10-18-13: The New Orleans Pelicans are undefeated during the preseason. The Pelicans have won five in a row, defeating the Houston Rockets, Dallas Mavericks, Orlando Magic, Atlanta Hawks and Oklahoma City Thunder. Anthony Davis leads the team in points, rebounds and blocks per game. Davis went back to back games with 29 points and nine rebounds and 23 points and nine rebounds in wins against the Magic and Hawks. New point guard Jrue Holiday has led the team in assists in three of the five games. New Orleans has three preseason games remaining:
- Oct 19 vs Washington
- Oct 23 vs Miami
- Oct 25 at Orlando
10-17-13: The Pelicans have exercised their third-year options on Anthony Davis and Austin Rivers. Davis started 60 of the 64 games he appeared in last season and averaged 13.5 points, 8.2 rebounds,1.8 blocks and 1.2 steals.
8-23-13: Fear the Pelican! While New Orleans fans may take some time adjusting to their team’s new name, it won’t take long for them to get excited about their new players. In a bold draft night trade, the Pelicans acquired All-Star PG Jrue Holiday from the Philadelphia 76ers in exchange for their 2013 draft selection (Nerlens Noel) and a protected 2014 1st rounder. Holiday will be joined in New Orleans this year by Tyreke Evans, who signed a 4-year $44M free agent deal this summer.
New Orleans will open their home schedule on Wednesday, October 30th against the Indiana Pacers. Chris Paul and the Los Angeles Clippers will visit NOLA on Monday, February 24th and again on Wednesday, March 26th. The Miami Heat come to town on Saturday, March 22nd and Kevin Durant and the Oklahoma City Thunder visit on Friday, December 6th and Monday, April 14th.
Key Home Games:
- October 30th – Indiana Pacers
- November 8th – L.A. Lakers
- December 6th – Oklahoma City Thunder
- January 15th – Houston Rockets
- February 1st – Chicago Bulls
8-21-13: The Pelicans and Arinze Onuaku have agreed to sign a two-year non-guaranteed deal for this upcoming season. The deal includes a team option for the 2014-15 season.
Free agent forward Lance Thomas will re-sign with the Pelicans. The deal is a two-year partially guaranteed contract. The second year is a team option.
8-8-13: Free agent Lance Thomas is nearing a deal with the New Orleans Pelicans. According to reports, the two sides are finalizing the terms but a deal will be made.
7-1-13: The New Orleans pelicans pulled off the first trade of the NBA draft by sending the highly touted Nerlens Noel to the Philadelphia 76ers for Jrue Holiday in return. Noel was projected as a #1 overall pick all year long, but fell to 6th. Many are saying that because of his season ending knee injury, teams wanted to stay away from the risk of drafting him so high; uncertain when he would be at full strength again. Noel was clearly on edge until his name was finally called. The trade has been agreed upon but can’t be official until July 10th. With Trey Burke available it is curious as to why the Pelicans decided to trade for Jrue Holiday, who just signed a large contract extension.
6-28-13: Pelicans 2013 Draft Summary:
Round 1, Pick 6: C Nerlens Noel, Kentucky.
Round 2, Pick 12: PG Pierre Jackson, Baylor (from 76ers).
6-12-13: Next year the Hornets will be changing their name to the Pelicans. Question is, can they win more than 27 games? One could assume the future is bright for this young roster. With the 6th overall pick and a slew of young talented players such as Anthony Davis and Greivis Vasquez, the Hornets have a decent foundation to build upon. They will have to improve upon an 11-30 road record and will need to look for an offensive punch to boost their scoring. The Hornets were the second to worst scoring team in the west. Monty Williams will be back as head coach starting his fourth straight season.