Breaking down NOLA’s future after receiving the 1st Pick in the 2019 NBA Draft Lottery
Alright everybody have a seat, this is gonna be a long one. This is the culmination of a
number of NBA fans’ hopes, prayers, and wishes and while some may rejoice, others will scream in agony (I’m talking to you Zain Haider @badbiryani on IG and Twitter). What’s everybody here for? One word, four letters. ZION. The grand prize of the NBA Draft Lottery will be going to… the New Orleans Pelicans! Clocking in at number one, the Pels are almost guaranteed to secure the 6’7″, 284 pounder from Duke University and it would be AMAZING for them. One may ask, “No dip, Sherlock he’s literally a perfect combination of LeBron and Shaq” and while Williamson is one of those individuals that one can just drop on a random team and that team will fair well, it simply works for this franchise. With veteran Jrue Holiday running the point we could most definitely be seeing one of the best overall guard-big duos in the modern era. Holiday running with his high-intensity, high-output play style as far as offense goes, he’ll be able to play the passing game with Williamson till they are both blue in the face. Everything from simple pick and roll sets to intricate back-door cuts and play calls, you can get your bottom dollar that these two will make a SOLID duo. Along with solid wing and low-post players like Julius Randle and E’Twaun Moore, they’ll provide the much needed support on both the offensive and defensive ends. However, besides the aforementioned players and maybe Anthony Davis (depending on this summer), the Pelicans have A LOT of work to do. They need depth at the guard position considering Holiday’s proneness to injury and Elfrid Payton’s average play but I’m sure that the mastermind General Manager David Griffin will find some way to retool this roster. Griffin spoke to ESPN after the Draft Lottery saying, “I think Mrs. Benson and her ownership group have invested in this very heavily. And my presence there and my desire to be there had everything to do with this community. So I’m really excited for our fanbase.”
The man himself also responded to the question, “I say Zion, you say?” with “We’ve still got a lot of work to do.” Griffin’s previous employment was with the Cleveland Cavaliers from 2010-2017 and after being hired as Executive Vice President for the Pelicans, he has it made for himself. Whatever magic act he performed worked and he now has the simple choice, Zion Williamson. If and when he pulls the trigger and selects Zion, who is now reportedly fine with going to NOLA after initially wanting to go to NYC per ESPN, he will have to work steadfastly to transform this team into a top-tier competitor. Working with HC Alvin Gentry and the wonderful Front Office team they have down in New Orleans, he will have all the tools he needs to get the job done. Though Anthony Davis reportedly still wants out, some may seem a great loss. I can gurantee you that guys like Griffin only see opportunity, though they will be losing an NBA All Star, they will definitely receive a handsome package in return which help develop a squad centered around Zion. So either they convince AD to stay and the Pelicans can build a team of strength and size around him and Zion or they can say goodbye to Davis and focus on the future…Zion. For all my 90s kids I think it’s safe to say that Zion Williamson is the closest to a real life “Jesus Shuttlesworth” from “He Got Game” (directed by Spike Lee) thing that the basketball gods have sent us.