Player News - Pelicans

Date: Team: Pos:

Frank Jackson (foot) will not play in summer league.

The good news is Jackson should be ready for camp. He needed surgery on his right foot for a stress fracture, which he was playing through at Duke for last season. The Utah native won a state championship in high school, but didn't do too much at Duke with averages of 10.9 points, 2.5 boards and 1.7 assists. Jackson has a lot of athleticism and could be a combo guard for the Pelicans, but he'll have some work to do to get minutes.
Jun 23 - 3:04 PM

The Pelicans acquired the 31st pick from Charlotte and took guard Frank Jackson out of Duke with the pick.

Jackson will replace Tim Frazier for the Pelicans and the Duke guard needed surgery on his right foot for a stress reaction in May, which he was playing through last season. He competed in the NBA Combine and lit it up with a 42-inch max vert and was effective in the first game. Jackson didn’t exactly light it up at Duke with 10.9 points, 2.5 boards, 2.7 assists, 0.6 blocks and 1.4 treys in 24.9 minutes per game, so he’ll have to work on his facilitating. He's a combo guard, but like most second-round picks, shouldn't make an impact this season.
Jun 22 - 10:56 PM

Mavs general manager Donnie Nelson said he doesn't expect to target a point guard in free agency now.

Dennis Smith Jr. looks like he has his team, coaching staff and front office behind him, so he's looking like a very sneaky Rookie of the Year pick. Meanwhile, there was talk the Mavs were going to pursue Jrue Holiday, so this news makes that more unlikely. Expect DSJ to have value right away while Holiday may be staying put with the Pelicans.
Jun 22 - 9:48 PM

Frank Jackson is a "player to watch at No. 21" for the Thunder, according to Chris Mannix of The Vertical.

Jackson has a ton of talent, but foot surgery could cause him to fall out of the lottery. He's also not a traditional guard with only 1.7 assists per game at Duke, but drafting an unconventional point guard has worked out quite nicely for OKC thus far. Jackson is pain-free right now and could fall anywhere from late in the lottery to the second round.
Jun 22 - 3:28 PM

The Mavericks have emerged as "serious contenders" to sign Jrue Holiday according to Jake Fischer of Sports Illustrated.

Ian Begley of ESPN reported back in May that the Mavericks were interested in Holiday, so not much has changed nearly a month later. The Pelicans said their top priority is to bring back Holiday and they can offer more money than any other team, so they are likely the favorite to re-sign the point guard. Jrue did say that he would like to play with his brother Justin and the Mavericks are interested in him as well, so that would certainly increase Dallas' appeal. Jrue just turned 27 and is coming off a strong season with averages of 15.4 points, 7.3 assists, 3.9 rebounds, 0.7 blocks, 1.5 steals and 1.5 treys on 45.4 percent shooting.
Jun 15 - 12:00 PM

Pelicans GM Dell Demps said Quincy Pondexter's (knee) status is "a little uncertain right now."

Demps said that the wing will go through some testing this week and that he's hopeful he will be back on the court soon. Pondexter hasn't played since the 2015 playoffs, so it's hard to project his role for the 2017-18 season. "He’s had some setbacks," Demps added. "He’s had a couple surgeries. It’s tough because he’s one of those glue-type guys who is a leader not only in the locker room, but on the floor. We’ve missed his defense and his shooting." If the Pelicans bring back Jrue Holiday, they will be over the cap and won't have much money to spend on quality wing players, so that bodes well for Pondexter's path to minutes. He's still unlikely to make an impact in standard fantasy leagues next season.
Source: NBA.com
Jun 8 - 9:56 AM

Frank Jackson underwent right foot surgery and is expected to be fully recovered "sometime in July."

A 6'4" point guard out of Duke, Jackson didn't live up to the hype during his freshman season with averages of 10.9 points, 2.5 rebounds, 1.7 assists, 0.6 steals and 1.4 triples, though he did redeem himself with a strong showing at the combine. He sustained a stress reaction in his foot during the season, but he reportedly played "pain-free." Jackson is expected to a second round pick and there's a chance that he could be ready in time for the Summer League.
May 25 - 10:48 AM

ESPN is reporting that the Knicks are interested in pending free agent Dante Cunningham.

Cunningham will be looking for a raise after earning just $2.9 million last season. Known as a versatile defender, Cunningham showed he was also a capable 3-point shooter last season. He averaged 1.1 treys per game while shooting a team-high 39.2 percent from the floor in 2016-17
Source: ESPN.com
May 23 - 1:50 PM

The Pelicans are close to hiring assistant Chris Finch to their coaching staff.

It's an interesting move for the Pelicans to add the former Nuggets assistant. Finch is somewhat responsible for Nikola Jokic becoming such an amazing offensive weapon and he's also part of the reason the Nuggets offense thrived in the second half. To be fair to Jokic, he's been an incredible passer since his first Summer League, so it's not like Anthony Davis and DeMarcus Cousins will transform overnight. Regardless, this is positive news for both the Pelicans bigs.
May 19 - 3:21 PM

James Harden, LeBron James, Russell Westbrook, Kawhi Leonard and Anthony Davis were named to the All-NBA first team.

Not many surprises here with four of the five basically being locks while Rudy Gobert had an outside chance to take the last spot over Davis. Despite going to the locker room more than any player, Davis still managed to play 75 games, averaging 28.0 points, 11.8 boards, 2.1 assists, 2.2 blocks and 1.3 steals.
May 18 - 2:07 PM

According to Ian Begley of ESPN, the Mavericks are interested in free agent PG Jrue Holiday.

The Pelicans can offer him more money than any other team and coach Alvin Gentry said their No. 1 priority is to re-sign him, so Begley adds that the Mavs will likely have to clear some cap space to make a competitive offer. Begley also said that the Knicks are fans of the 26-year-old PG, but the length and amount of Holiday's contract could take them out of the running. Holiday averaged 15.4 points, 7.3 assists, 3.9 rebounds, 0.7 blocks, 1.5 steals and 1.5 treys on 45.4 percent shooting and should be able to at least double his salary this summer after making $11.2 million in the final year of his deal.
Source: ESPN
May 18 - 11:24 AM

Pelicans coach Alvin Gentry said re-signing Jrue Holiday "is a number one priority" this summer.

The unrestricted free agent will be 27 years old in June and is widely expected to at least double his salary this offseason after making $11.2 million in 2016-17. Holiday missed the first 12 games of the season to take care of his family while his wife underwent a successful brain surgery, but he was solid upon his return and finished the campaign with averages of 15.4 points, 7.3 assists, 3.9 rebounds, 0.7 blocks, 1.5 steals and 1.5 treys on 45.4 percent shooting. The Pelicans obviously have two usage rate monsters in Anthony Davis and DeMarcus Cousins, so a move away from New Orleans likely wouldn't be a bad thing for his fantasy value.
May 16 - 6:39 PM

Coach Alvin Gentry said one of the Pelicans primary goals this offseason will be improving their outside shooting.

New Orleans' frontcourt, with DeMarcus Cousins and Anthony Davis, is obviously their strength. However, Gentry acknowledged that it's also imperative to surround his two stud bigs with shooters that can space the floor. "We’re going to have to be able to knock down perimeter shots. Not necessarily 3-point shots, but we have to make perimeter shots to keep the defense honest," said Gentry. "That’s going to be something we struggled with last year and something we have to improve on in order to make a playoff run."
May 16 - 10:30 AM

Donatas Motiejunas said that he while he would prefer to play in the NBA next season, he would consider returning to Europe as well.

Motiejunas had a nightmare 2016-17 season due to injuries and contract disputes. He is currently suing the Rockets and the NBA over his contract issues. Motiejunas finished the season with the Pelicans but does not believe he is a fit in New Orleans. "[The Pelicans] don't need me, they already have 4-5 big man on the roster for the next season," said Motiejunas. His preferred NBA destinations are San Antonio, Golden State, Utah or Washington.
May 16 - 9:25 AM

The Pelicans will keep head coach Alvin Gentry in place for the 2017-18 season according to The Advocate.

In addition to Gentry, general manager Dell Demps will also keep his job. Gentry has compiled a 64-100 record over the past two years, so the 2017-18 season will likely be his last chance to make the Pelicans relevant again in the West. Gentry is set to represent the Pelicans at the draft lottery on Tuesday which all but confirms this report, but the fact that the franchise haven't publicly commented on the matter isn't very reassuring.
May 15 - 11:58 AM


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