Pelicans' plans for the draft
What do you think the Pelicans should look for in the draft?
I'm of the belief that they should trade down and try to collect more assets (like the Rockets did a year ago). Especially if there's nobody who blows them away available when their turn comes. The draft is being sold as historically weak but there's a lot of role players just no real stars. They could take their pick (likely 4-8) and trade down with a team like ATL and take their 2 mid first rounders. In a draft like this one I think you take quantity of picks over quality of picks. This way instead ending up with maybe a Shabazz in the mid lottery you get Dario Saric and Jamaal Franklin in the mid first.
Also think the Pelicans have to trade EG before next season. I think a deal with PHX, who already really want him, is the easiest way to go. Trading EG for Gortat, who doesn't want to be in PHX, would be great for both teams.
I think they could get more for Gordon than just Gortat. I don't know what his value is, given his obnoxiously large injury history, but when healthy, he's one of the top 2's in the league.
I also don't really know what the Pelicans' true needs are- I imagine a C, a PG, an SF? If they could get their hands on Noel (imagine how impossible it would be for anyone to get a shot off inside with those two as a tandem, lol), that'd be cool. Porter would be a big help as well, and so would McLemore if they get rid of Gordon.
But yeah...they do seem to have more needs than they do draft picks. If they hadn't whiffed on picking Rivers (yeah...I'm calling him a bust already- he had the worst statistical season of all time going before he got hurt), they'd have been in much better shape.
If I were New Orleans, I'd see if I could succor Phoenix into trading their 1st round pick, maybe in the 4-7 range for Gordon. It's a weak draft yes, and the Suns may say no, but If I'm New Orleans, I don't want Eric Gordon to be one of my corner stones with his health problems. And they're lucky that they'll have a willing taker in Phoenix.
Rivers stats are very similar to Jamal Crawfords rookie stats. That's important bc they both came into the league as 2 guards who ppl tried to turn into PGs and they failed at it. Rivers will come around. Noel would be great next to Unibrow's emerging offensive game. But when talking about wings in this draft there's really nothing separating the top wing players (McLemore/Porter/Oladipo) from middle of the pack guys (KCP/Franklin/Saric). I just think the Pelicans need another bad season and grab a prospect with more star potential next year. Or stack tradeable assets like Houston and move them for a star.
Also I'm all for trading Gordon for a pick in this draft just to create cap space and rid the team of the unhappy player. I'd trade him for the best package available. Doesn't matter if its picks, prospects, vets, or cash. If Phoenix wants him let them have him.
The trade to Phoenix would be a good idea, I would want Gortat, Dudley and Future 1st rounder for him at least.
When you're as bad as the Hornets/Pelicans, you pick the best player available... They need help everywhere.
For a healthy Gordon yes Gortat Dudley and a First is a guarantee but with him being injured for most of the last 2 years you have to settle for maybe Gortat and their 2013 pick. Which isn't bad for a guy who hasn't produced at all over the last 2 years and has a max contract already.
Trade Gordon for anything. That contract is ghastly.
He doesn't want to be there move him. Phoenix makes sense you know they want him but, I'm sure Charlotte, Detroit or Orlando could put package together to take a chance on Gordon. Also, I think Otto Porter would be a great fit for the Hornets they need some gritty players.
They could also try a sign and trade with Utah for Al Jefferson or Paul Milsap. I'm not sure of their cap situation though.
I think you're "overvaluing" gordon a bit...
Of course he's a smart offensive player but he had a tough injury and didn't come back at this real level yet. His season is by now very very weak AND most of all he has a HUGE contract which is nowadays (with new rules) a big brake on every possible trade with a team on a rebuilding plan as phoenix.
Draft picks even in a weak draft are more and more important cause they provide cheaper players.
Just looking at Espn's NOH page at their roster depth/chart, I noticed that the Hornets are 24th in NBA in scoring, 20th in rebounds, 22nd in assists and 14th in points allowed. So from that snap stats, you could say they should look for a creative force rather than defensive force, with Gordon missing 40 odd games and Davis only in his rookie year, scoring may well improve quickly next year.
Before I have thought that NOH should maybe target an SF or someone who can play significant time at SF given that Gordon, Vasquez and Rivers can cover a lot of backcourt minutes and Davis, Anderson, Lopez with Smith in reserve can cover the frontcourt.
Of course if NOH got a lottery pick could they turn down Noel, Smart and even though McLemore would have Gordon in situ, I'm sure they would consider taking McLemore and trading Gordon for talent/draft picks. Noel alongside Davis would be a potential twin towers and lock down defence, Lopez could be traded whilst Anderson gives 3 point range round them.
Otto Porter would perhaps be their likely target if they got a lottery pick and he'd make them an even better defensive team giving them another potential lockdown defender to assist Davis. Likewise if they draft from their likely current position Oladipo would be an excellent defensive option to play so SF and give the offence based backcourt a defensive presence. They could both compliment Aminu on providing excellent SF defence and there would be flexibility to share the minutes out.
Shabazz could give them extra scoring and as 3rd/4th option on the team could have a chance to develop and become maybe an excellent 6th man scoring option alongside Anderson.
Does Eric Gordon have a twin brother on the Suns? If not, I don't think Phoenix is interested him.