Pelicans Season Swept Away in Loss to Warriors


Tonight the Pelican’s were outplayed yet again by the mighty Golden State Warriors, who completed their four game sweep after a 109-98 victory. Though sweeps are fairly dominant, the Pelicans played one heck of a series, keeping every game within reach until the very end.

It is sad to see this exciting season come to an end, but the NBA will hopefully fear this New Orleans team in the postseason for years to come.

Klay Thompson and Draymond Green carried the Golden State load in the first half. They combined for 14-20 shooting for 35 of the Warriors first 67 points.

Thompson is used to carrying the offensive load, but the production was a nice boost for Green going forward, as he has struggled to score for most of this series. He does not always have to score for Golden State to be effective, but as he showed tonight, Golden State becomes that much more deadly when he gets the ball in the basket.

Apr 23, 2015; New Orleans, LA, USA; Golden State Warriors guard Stephen Curry (30) celebrates with guard Klay Thompson (11) following a win in overtime against the New Orleans Pelicans in game three of the first round of the NBA Playoffs at the Smoothie King Center. The Warriors defeated the Pelicans 123-119 in overtime. Mandatory Credit: Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports

Steph Curry continued to put on a show all throughout this game, headlined by his 6-8 shooting from three.

He was making flashy passes, hitting crazy shots and acting as the catalyst for his team. Just another typical showing for the young point guard, who always plays as if he is in the backyard fooling around with friends.

It will be interesting to see if anyone can stop him for the remainder of the postseason.

For the Pelicans, the offense was flowing through Eric Gordon and Anthony Davis. They combined for 65 points on 26 0f 41 shooting, scoring well over half of the team’s points.

Gordon has had trouble scoring from inside the perimeter during this series, but he has been red hot from behind the arc.

The script was flipped tonight, as he was hitting on a lot of his interior opportunities.

Since his return from injury, Gordon has thrived in a sharpshooting role, but it is nice to see that he can still show flashes of his once lauded inside game.

This was Gordon’s first career playoff series, and if he does decide to opt into the final year of his contract for next season, this experience will probably pay dividends for the Pelicans.

Davis had another solid game for himself as well, gathering 11 boards to go along with his 36 points.

The Brow put up big numbers this season, and his first career series of playoff play was no different.

He managed to post 30 points and 10 rebounds in each of the four games, a trend that will hopefully continue as his career progresses.

Apr 25, 2015; New Orleans, LA, USA; New Orleans Pelicans forward Anthony Davis (23) is defended by Golden State Warriors forward Draymond Green (23) during the first quarter in game four of the first round of the NBA Playoffs at the Smoothie King Center. Mandatory Credit: Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports

Like Gordon and most of the other Pelicans, Davis got his first taste of playoff action against the Warriors.

Quite frankly it may be a while until any team plays at the level of this Golden State squad, so the fact that Davis was able to hold his own and keep the game close is a great sign for this young New Orleans team.

After struggling in the first two games of the series, Ryan Anderson was red hot from the floor in game three. However, he struggled once again in game four hitting only 4 out of 11 shots.

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Ryno has had a rough season full of slumps and injuries, but also some great moments. Hopefully he will get back to consistently lighting up opposing defenses in the 2015-2016 season.

In the last couple games of this series Quincy Pondexter differed to his teammates more often than not, only taking 6 total shots between the two.

His red hot shooting was a huge reason the Pelicans were able to reach the playoffs, so it would have been nice to see him get more opportunities.

It is easier said than done against such a stingy defense in Golden State, and he was smart to differ to his hot teammates, but the point remains nonetheless.

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The Warriors maintained a healthy lead for pretty much the entire game, but the Pels did not let the lead get too out of hand. It would have been easy to give up after being done by as much as 24 in the third quarter.

Monty Williams gets a ton of flack, some of it deserved, but he always has his players competing for 48 minutes, and that is not a small feat.

Apr 25, 2015; New Orleans, LA, USA; New Orleans Pelicans head coach Monty Williams talks with forward Anthony Davis (23) during the first half in game four of the first round of the NBA Playoffs against the Golden State Warriors at the Smoothie King Center. Mandatory Credit: Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports

The Pels cut that massive lead to as low as 7 with a couple minutes remaining, a feat they also accomplished in game one. Everyone from the management to the fans should be proud of the effort given by this team.

Norris Cole and Dante Cunningham are two of the most impactful presences off the bench for New Orleans.

They do not always light up the scoreboard, but they both excel at hitting the shots they are supposed to hit. Cole had a fantastic series and second half of the season for the Pels, and he would definitely be welcomed back to New Orleans next season.

Dante Cunningham did all of the little things for the Pelicans, and managed to rack up a few highlights of his own in this series with Golden State.

He has played well enough in his role to earn a nice contract, considering he only signed for the league minimum this season. Whether or not he returns to the Pelicans remains to be seen, but it is nice to see such a class act and hard worker get his NBA career back on track.

The season ended with a sweep, but it was a valiant effort from the eight seeded Pelicans.

Their goal was to make the playoffs, and the achieved that goal. Next year, we can expect the more experienced New Orleans squad to be more mature in this situation and try to advance.

It has been a fun second season for the rebranded Pelicans, and from here they will only fly up……..

Next: Kenny Vaccaro Survives in the Face of Adversity

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