The New Orleans Pelicans lost their fifth game of the season on Saturday and could see more losses coming their way, depending on Brandon Ingram’s health.
The New Orleans Pelicans continued their rough start to the 2019 season with yet another loss on Saturday. This game was particularly frustrating, as the loss came against a team that the Pelicans should have had no problem beating, the Oklahoma City Thunder.
The Thunder had some close games and showed promise in their first five games and continued that in this game against the Pelicans. From top to bottom, however, the Pelicans are just more talented and could not get the job done despite the two teams being virtually identical in every stat.
Perhaps the main reason that the New Orleans Pelicans lost this game was the loss of Brandon Ingram, who exited the game midway through the second quarter with a head injury, logging just 13 minutes on the court.
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Pelicans’ head coach Alvin Gentry said after the game that he did not see how Ingram got hurt and provided no timetable for the breakout forward (h/t Jeff Nowak, NOLA.com). This is alarming for the Pelicans, whose season is at risk of spiraling out of control if Ingram misses an extended period of time.
If it is a concussion then Pelican fans can expect Ingram to be out for around four games. A study by the Orthopedic Journal of Sports Medicine found that the average time missed with a concussion is 7.7-8.6 days, missing 3.5-4.1 games.
The Pelicans can give him nine days of rest through the 11th and plan to suit him up on the 14th against the Los Angeles Clippers.
With this being an injury that happened in the game, chances are that this is not a lingering issue that could have bigger repercussions, although we can never take anything for granted in these situations.
However, to be optimistically realistic, it seems like a concussion is the worst-case scenario.
Either way, the Pelicans, who are already missing Zion Williamson, are going to struggle immensely without Ingram on the floor. If he just misses four games then I would expect the team to go 0-4 against the Brooklyn Nets, Toronto Raptors, Charlotte Hornets and Houston Rockets.
The team is really struggling with its size with Derrick Favors also out and while Ingram was off the court it was clear that the team could not find that go-to scorer. On paper, that should be Jrue Holiday, but he was not great in this game with just 16 points in 35 minutes.
Ingram has emerged as the best scorer on the New Orleans Pelicans and has finally shown that all of the promise earlier in his career was not for naught. While the team was still only 1-4 with him on the court, he was the reason why the games were even as close as they were.