Player News - Pelicans

Date: Team: Pos:

Buddy Hield is focused on improving his defense early in training camp.

Some of the things Hield is working on include "knowing when to pull in and help on defense, seeing man and ball, little things, working on schemes, closing out right, knowing personnel – who can shoot, who cannot shoot – and who Coach wants to put at the [foul] line." We expect an inconsistent first year for Hield on both ends of the floor, and his biggest challenge may be adjusting to the physicality of the game on each side of the ball.
Source: NBA.com
Sep 24 - 4:29 PM

Quincy Pondexter (knee surgeries) said that he still has to get his leg "a lot stronger" after two major knee surgeries.

Q-Pon didn't play at all last season due to ongoing knee complications, and it doesn't sound like he'll be back before November—but more likely December or January—at the earliest. Even with a nickname that centers around a discount, he's not on the fantasy radar in any format.
Source: PBT
Sep 24 - 2:39 PM

Tyreke Evans revealed that he developed a blood clot in his calf after his most recent knee surgery.

This definitely helps to explain why Evans is taking a slow road back to action. "I had to take a step back, but I kept working hard in my rehab," he said. Doctors have told Evans not to rush his return, and the swingman also said he's not aware of any concerns that doctors have about the clotting being an ongoing issue. Between all of his recent knee surgeries, an uncertain timeline to get back on the floor and the news of a blood clot, it's virtually impossible to recommend burning a draft pick—even in the later rounds—on the former Rookie of the Year.
Source: PBT
Sep 24 - 2:37 PM

Anthony Davis (knee surgery) did "virtually" everything in the Pelicans first practice, and added that he's feeling "great" as the team heads into training camp.

Given AD dealt with both knee and shoulder problems last season, this is certainly an encouraging start, especially since Davis said his shoulder feels "stronger than it's ever been." That being said, the big man remains one of the biggest—if not the biggest—risk vs. reward players in fantasy due to his injury history and price point in drafts. He has never played 70 games in any NBA season, and he'll again be the focal point on every opposing team's scouting report as the Pelicans prepare to enter the season shorthanded without Jrue Holiday (personal) or Tyreke Evans (knee surgery). As an aside, Davis said he "never" plans to leave New Orleans and wants to bring a title to Bourbon Street.
Source: ESPN
Sep 24 - 2:30 PM

Pelicans sign G Quinn Cook.

The former Duke PG averaged 19.6 points, 5.4 assists, 3.9 boards and 1.2 steals per game on 46.6 percent shooting in the D-League last season, winning the Rookie of the Year Award. The Pelicans need some help at point guard with Jrue Holiday away from the team, so Cook could make the 15-man roster and provide some depth behind Tim Frazier.
Sep 24 - 1:17 PM

Omer Asik said he's hoping to bounce back after dealing with back, calf and ankle issues last season.

"I just kept playing through things," Asik said. "But injuries just happened over and over. That’s why I tried to focus on getting stronger, so I won’t face those problems again. I worked all summer to get healthy. Right now, I’m feeling great, much better than last year." He was brutal last season to put it nicely, and it's possible he could lose his starting job to Alexis Ajinca. The Pelicans would also be wise to use Anthony Davis at center in smaller lineups, so Asik will need a tremendous camp in order to hold onto his role. Don't draft him.
Source: NBA.com
Sep 24 - 12:10 PM

Tyreke Evans (knee) said he's targeting a potential return to the court in December.

"Right now I’m just putting up shots, rehabbing, trying to get the strength back in my quads," Evans said. "My knee actually feels pretty good, and I’m not feeling the pain I was before, which is a good thing. We’ll see how I feel when I start running up and down [and playing fullcourt basketball]." Evans had three surgeries on his right knee in a nine-month span, so the Pelicans won't be rushing him back this time. Despite averaging 15.2 points, 6.6 assists and 5.2 rebounds last season, he's a very risky pick in fantasy drafts this season.
Source: NBA.com
Sep 24 - 10:12 AM

Jrue Holiday's wife Lauren gave birth to a healthy girl this week.

She's expected to undergo surgery in about six weeks to remove a benign tumor from the right side of her brain, so we wish Jrue and his family nothing but the best. The Pelicans have been very supportive of Holiday's decision and will give him as much time as he needs. "When the time is right, he'll return," Pelicans GM Dell Demps said. "But as of now, our hearts and prayers are with them. And we're hoping that Lauren has a successful surgery." Until Holiday returns to New Orleans, Tim Frazier is the favorite to hold down the fort at PG, making him an intriguing late-round flier.
Source: ESPN
Sep 24 - 10:04 AM

Buddy Hield said he worked on all aspects of his game this summer.

He did his fair share of ball-handling at Oklahoma, so Hield may be asked to create more than most rookie shooting guards. Hield has also talked about running more pick-and-roll with Anthony Davis, so that will be a play worth watching during camp. Hield is still more of a late-round flier.
Sep 23 - 4:22 PM

Alexis Ajinca sounded confident when asked about the possibility of being the starter at center.

"I will be a starter this year. You'll see," Ajinca said. He would have to beat out Omer Asik, which isn't too hard based on how the Pelicans haven't fared well with him on the court. For what it's worth, the Pelicans had a plus-8.7 net rating with Ajinca and Antohny Davis lineups and a minus-7.5 net rating with Davis and Asik. Regardless, there's no need to be too aggressive in drafting any Pelican big besides The Brow.
Sep 23 - 3:19 PM

General manager Dell Demps said he never really felt like Tyreke Evans (knee) was healthy last season.

Demps also confirmed Evans is not going to be ready to start the season, he may not be ready until December, and he's also going to continue his rehab in the states while the Pelicans head to China. Based on this comment, you can bet the Pelicans take it easy on Evans. He played just 25 games last season and needed surgeries to both knees in the past two years.
Sep 23 - 3:12 PM

Coach Alvin Gentry said he doesn't have a set starter at point guard yet.

Sadly, Jrue Holiday is likely to miss time to be with his wife. The Pelicans are going to have to piece their point guard rotation and Gentry said the position will figure itself out. As of right now, Tim Frazier appears to be the favorite to start opening night. He improved as a scorer and turned in an awesome April, so he's a worthwhile flier late in fantasy drafts.
Sep 23 - 2:53 PM

General manager Dell Demps said Solomon Hill can slide over to play some power forward.

This isn't surprising to hear whatsoever after the Pelicans dropped a four-year, $52 million deal on him. Anthony Davis has been more successful as a center, so Hill turning in good minutes at the four would go a long way. The former Pacer is inconsistent, but a new uniform could help him become fantasy relevant.
Sep 23 - 2:39 PM

Quincy Pondexter (knee) is not traveling with the team to China.

He will stay home to continue his rehab. Pondexter still hasn't gone through any on-court work yet, so he's behind schedule. The Pelicans will almost certainly bring him along slowly and he might not be ready to start the season. Due to his knee surgery, he hasn't played in a game since Apr. 25, 2015.
Sep 23 - 2:35 PM

The Pelicans have signed Robert Sacre to a training camp deal.

The Pelicans' biggest weakness is at center with Omer Asik and Alexis Ajinca in town, but Sacre still projects to be third on the depth chart if he makes the final roster. There's no fantasy value here.
Sep 22 - 12:23 PM


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