Can NO really afford to bring Evans and Anderson off the bench?
While I'm skeptical about the Evans' signing, I'm withholding judgment until the dust settles. Even if he isn't a great fit, I admire a relatively small market team's balls to sign a super talented but mercurial combo guard who publicly stated his unwillingness to play SF. Today's NBA is about acquiring assets and asking questions later.
Here's one question unrelated to Evans' value: can the Hornets afford to bring Tyreke Evans and Ryan Anderson off the bench? Reke insists that he will not play SF and I'm not sure the Hornets want to ignite an already volatile young player's temper by immediately fixing him in a role he has no desire to play. A fluid but still mediocre athlete, the 6-10 Anderson is not only unsuited to play SF but he's thriving as one of the league's prototypical "Stretch 4's," maybe even the best considering he's finished in the top two in three-pointers made the last two seasons. The Hornets would prefer not to play Davis at C, at least not for a few more years, as his body continues to develop. They want a big, sturdy center to cover his back.
So what is NO planning to do? Relative to their starting core of Holiday, Gordon and Davis, SF and C are practically empty. Meanwhile, they're paying Evans and Anderson a combined $20 million to come off the bench. That's a lot of coin for any bench, let alone two players entering their prime and deserving of major minutes.
I'm just curious as to what you guys think this team's solution is. Ignore Evans gripes, or better yet, persuade him to play SF? Start Anderson at PF and Davis at C? Another blockbuster trade?
I would look to trade either Anderson or Gordon to improve the C or SF spots. They could makes some minor FA signings to improve.
It doesn't hurt them too bad because a Davis extention won't kick in until Gordon and Anderson are set to expire. Even if they had a servicable 3 and 5 this team still wouldn't go further than the second round at best. They're better off spending big on a young core then filling in next summer when they'll have a full year to evaluate and see what fits together and have the full MLE at their disposal.
Also while everyone is focused on Gordon don't count out Austin Rivers as a trade chip to fill one of those spots
Evans won't start at SF, but there will be plenty of times he EG and Jrue are out there together.
The Pelicans are doing the right thing by stock-piling young talent. When your a small-market team, you have to take what you can get, and sometimes a bad team has to over-pay for somebody.
I actually really like what theyre doing. But i do wonder if EG is on his way out. Maybe they could trade him for a center (Gortat?)
As a Hornets fan I'm hoping they move Gordon, they got Evans on a nice deal and were able to move Lopez.
The New Orleans Hornets remind me of the Minnesota Timberwolves of the last few years, not at all in playing style but just with the undeniable talent they have and the questions revolving "if" the team will succeed. Most teams with too many "if's" usually fail like the Minnesota Timberwolves have.
Last year Minny was considered a playoff team..."IF" Roy stayed healthy, Kirilenko stayed healthy, Rubio stayed healthy, Love stayed healthy, Williams found a legit role, and they started to play real defense. Kirilenko played 64 games, Rubio played 57 games, Love played 18 games, and Roy played 5 games. So out of 328 games (82x4) they played a combined 143 games which is an average of 36 games each. That "IF" really came into play.
By no means is NO that injury prone but they have shown some signs and have glaring holes at SF and C that must be addressed but I believe will (to an extent). New Orleans has its fair share of "if's".
The first and most important one is if Gordon can stay healthy. NO was a different team when he played. Gordon played 42 games last year and was a difference maker last year. NO will unlikely have enough depth to afford him being injured, a major injury free season is imperative towards No's success.
Austin Rivers has to be moved. He is a SG in the league and is not needed on this teams makeup. They need to trade him for a good SF role player.
The only player the Pelicans have on thier roster at SF is Darius Miller and I don't believe he is ready for 20-plus minutes per game. I love him as a player and see him playing a role next year but not as a major rotation piece. Some interest has been given to Iggy although I doubt they use that money on another ball handler. With that being said some guys on the market are Corey Brewer, Dorrell Wright, and Matt Barnes. They were rumoured to have some interest in Brewer and I think he would be thw perfect fit but even then they would need to acquire another decent rotation wing to compete, unless they know something about Miller that I dont.
They have solid players in the frontcourt but no true starting C. Davis has extreme potential at PF, Anderson is a great stretch 4 off the bench, and Jason Smith is a combo big, extremely hard worker, underrated jumpshooter, and always seems to be doing something productive on the floor but has defensive holes and is best used as an energy guy 15-17mpg. Pekovic and Hickson are both available and I would bet my next months rent money they sign a Center. If the Pelicans do end up paying for Iggy they won't be able to afford Pekovic or Hickson, but Speights or Brandon Wright would be nice alternatives.
I think they will sign Pekovic or Hickson and Corey Brewer that makes the most sense and they can afford it. Pekovic and Hicksons weakness as shorter but highly skilled C's would be somewhat hidden by Davis's length. I also think they will trade Rivers for some depth. I personally am intrigued by what they are doing and currently love it. The big picture looks good if Gordon can stay healthy, if not they have no depth and will end up struggling.
played 42 games,
Nikola Pekovic, JJ Hickson, Mareese Spieghts, Brandon Wright, dorell Wright, matt Barnes, Corey brewe
I think Dorell Wright would be a very smart signing for them, as he can shoot the 3 and also play decent D.
This team should really be looking to play small ball... Davis and Anderson are an ideal pairing for small ball, as both can rebound well, while Anderson is a deadly shooter and Davis is a great shot blocker.
if the pelicans trade Gordon for an average 3 and 5 I'd be ecstatic.
Gortat and Dudley for Gordon?
Jared Dudley is going to the LA Clippers for Eric Bledsoe.
that there is a plan to move Gordon at some stage. I would imagine they need to showcase him some and let teams inckuding themselves see if he has healed/recovered fully. 11mill is alot for a bench guard in my opinion so I suspect/hope this is the plan.
I remember them trying to tout Anderson as an option at the 3 in certain line ups when they signed him
But yes better too much talent than too llittle.
It hasn't really been well publicized, but NO got Jeff Withey with that trade. He's not a big minute starter, but he's NBA ready enough and a quality enough rim protector to give you 15-18 mpg as a rookie and be a really effective shot blocker. Davis and Withey in the same lineup will give New Orleans two of the three most dominant NCAA shot blockers of the past decade. They're both on the skinny side, but their length, mobility and timing will give teams problems.
NO should grab another bulkier C, but Withey, I feel, is in a great situation to step in and use his best basketball tool. Rim protection, even if it's just i a 15-18 mpg situational basis.
What about Aminu? This guy was a lottery picked and is still relatively young. Did they give up on him ? I don't follow them as closely but I thought his impact would be solid by now.
He's been a disapointment so far. He's a FA, so NO isn't likely to bring him back. Plus, it seems to me Aminu is for a athletic, undersized PF than a SF.
The only thing he's proven is that he's a good positional rebounder. He was drafted as an upside type guy because of his athletic ability, but his offense hasn't really taken any steps forward. He's virtually the same player he is as a rookie, but with more experience. Not a guy to invest much in going forward, unless in another year or two he makes a jump, but his development totally doesn't warrant a big new deal.
Has he gotten any offers since they won't bring him back ? I was a big fan of him in college but I would love to see the cavs throw him a contract