It’s Time for the Pelicans to Make Serious Changes


Every day that passes in which the New Orleans Pelicans organization doesn’t blow this team up, is a day wasted. This team isn’t good. We can speculate why, try to fix it, or patch things up in the short-term, but the truth is that using this season to improve the team in the long run is the only defensible move at this point.

I remember the day the Jrue Holiday trade was announced, the day Gordon got his extension, and the day Tyreke and Asik were acquired later on. I’ve been along for the ride, and I’ve felt the same sense of optimism and hope the rest of the fan base did.

We took a shot, we built with “young veterans,” and we sacrificed picks for proven talent. The result is a 35-40ish win team  (that’s an optimistic projection by the way) who will be a perennial first round exit at best.

We have two options:

A) Accept this 35 win team as it is, patch it and improve it in little ways wherever you can. (safe, boring)

B) Decide that this team isn’t enough, blow it up and try again. (risky, promising)

Dec 18, 2015; Phoenix, AZ, USA; Phoenix Suns forward Jon Leuer (30) guards New Orleans Pelicans forward Anthony Davis (23) during the first half at Talking Stick Resort Arena. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

If you chose ‘A’, then that’s your prerogative.

Some people might be fine with mediocrity, but for me the only goal which legitimately matters in this league is building a championship roster. Championship rosters get remembered and transcribed in the NBA’s DNA.

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    Last night showcased that.

    First of all, this team cannot win on the road. Aside from the Jazz game two nights ago, the ONLY other time the Pelicans have won on the road this season is against the Suns on the 25th of November. Outside of that they have won a meager five games at home this season to attempt to balance their record.

    Our core guard trio shot 10/34 from the field 3/16 from deep, and managed to contribute a pathetic six assists between the three of them despite playing 79 minutes and handling the ball through basically all of them.

    That’s historically bad.

    I can understand if for instance three guards making a combined 4.5 million on the 76ers had that stat-line, but not three guards making upwards of 35 million and playing next to Anthony Davis.

    Dec 18, 2015; Phoenix, AZ, USA; New Orleans Pelicans guard Eric Gordon (10) passes the ball past Phoenix Suns center Tyson Chandler (4) and guard Ronnie Price (14) during the first half at Talking Stick Resort Arena. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

    How did Anthony Davis do? Or better, how well could he have done?

    He was given 12 shots the entire night, three of which came after an offensive rebound he earned himself. That means the Pelicans guard trio only put Davis in position to score about 9 times in this entire game.

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    He put up 16 points, hit his free throws and struggled to get open looks. Can we expecting anything different given his teammates abilities?

    Still, Gordon has a solid 15-3-3 stateliness for the season and the reputation of a great shooter, Ryan Anderson’s putting up 18-6-2 and is every team’s dream stretch four, and Tyreke Evans is still a player who can basically be your entire offense (albeit a fairly below average one).

    These guys have trade value, why are we just sitting on them? Do we want to spend some 60 more games watching the same mistakes get made we’ve seen since 2013? At a certain point you decide to let go, this game was a perfect example of the reason why.

    The Pelicans shot 4/22 from deep tonight against the Suns, averaging out to a nice 18.2%. They also shot 36.6% from the floor, got out rebounded and assisted by nine each, and let the Suns shoot 52%.

    Granted, this team is bad, but they aren’t that bad.

    The team which played tonight is a 7-8 win team at best, and it was clearly just a very “off” night for most of our guys. Still, maybe that’s indicative of a trend. If these guys are going to keep playing worse, then you need to move them sooner rather than later.

    Dec 4, 2015; New Orleans, LA, USA; New Orleans Pelicans forward Ryan Anderson (33) reacts to a call during the second quarter of a game against the Cleveland Cavaliers at the Smoothie King Center. Mandatory Credit: Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports

    I don’t hate Dell Demps for taking an unorthodox approach to building this team, sometimes things just don’t work out.

    Although, if he continues to believe they are something they aren’t and we lose Gordon and Anderson this summer for nothing I will call for his job and begin to believe he has developed a form of “Stockholm Syndrome” towards the roster.

    Are you sad tonight as a Pelicans fan? I’m not.

    Maybe its “untraditional”, but I have no issue rooting for losses if it means Ben Simmons or Brandon Ingram joining AD in 2016, that’s called a plan and plan’s require sacrifices to be made along the way.

    The bottom line is that the clock is ticking.

    Every day that we sit tight and collect no long-term assets for this team is a day wasted. Every day we muddle as a 35 win team and don’t commit to a high draft pick is a day wasted.

    Every day we sit thinking we could every build something close to a title contender with Tyreke Evans and Eric Gordon at the helm is another day wasted as well.

    We know all there is to know, it’s time to stop wasting time and build for a brighter future.

    It’s time for the New Orleans Pelicans to make serious changes —— and that time is now…………………………….