How Will The New Look Pelicans Fare in the NBA?
The New Orleans Pelicans have finally parted ways with Anthony Davis. Davis was the face of the franchise for the last few years but made it clear he wanted out of New Orleans, and to become part of a contender. Davis and his agent made it clear that his ideal landing spot was the Los Angeles Lakers. General Manager Rob Pelinka and LeGM offered a block buster trade to New Orleans which included; 2017 #2 overall pick Lonzo Ball, 2016 #2 overall pick Brandon Ingram, and Josh Hart, along with a slew of first round picks to get the deal done. One of these picks is the 4th overall pick in the 2019 NBA Draft.
In a move to brighten their future, the Pelicans gained great draft capital as well as two young players with outstanding potential in Ball and Ingram. Ball has proven to be a pass first point guard, while Ingram has shown that he has potential to be a real scoring threat in the league. The Pelicans will also have the ability to add any draft eligible player in this year’s draft to this roster considering they have the #1 overall pick. It has been made clear that the #1 overall pick will be used on Zion Williamson whose style of play seems to mesh with what Ball and Ingram bring to the table.
They also acquired the #4 overall pick in their trade with the Lakers and are expected to use that pick to target other veterans. One big name sources have revealed them to be interested in is the Wizard’s Bradley Beal. They should not feel pressured to move this pick however due to the fact that there will be plenty of talent left on the board in this year’s draft at #4. Many believe that the addition of Bol Bol, (son of the late Manute Bol) would fit what the Pelicans are trying to build right now. Bol Bol is a big man who can shoot 3’s which will allow him to stretch out the floor for Zion and his aggressive nature of play.
Now if this were to happen and the Pelicans were to draft both Zion and Bol their starting lineup could look like this:
PG: Lonzo Ball
SG: Jrue Holliday
SF: Brandon Ingram
PF: Zion Williamson
C: Bol Bol
Do not count the Pelicans out just because they are young. If they utilize their potential picks correctly, combined with their existing veterans led by Jrue Holiday, they can find themselves contending for a playoff spot in the West. Lonzo Ball is one of the players with the highest ceiling when it comes to potential in the league because of his impeccable passing and solid defense. The Pelicans need to make sure he develops a jump shot in order to make him the complete player he can become.
Jrue Holiday was the highlight of the Pelicans season last year with his stellar performance game after game. He was one of the most consistent players on their roster. Ingram can score well and should relish in his new role as a starter with the Pelicans. He will be able to have the ball in his hands much more often then last season when he was backing up LeBron James.
The Pelicans hope that Zion Williamson; one of the most hyped players leading up to the draft since Anthony Davis, will live up to the hype and be a star in the NBA. The Pelicans might have lost their superstar in Anthony Davis, but there is plenty of reason to believe that the Pelicans could become a serious contender in the near future.