Before we dig into anything else, the picture above was taken THIS Saturday. Ryan Anderson took the court, went 3-6 behind the arc, and scored 12 points in 14 minutes of action. Glad to see he was back and performing largely like himself.
Pelicans 98 - Heat 86
This game was not televised. No, not just not televised in New Orleans. It was not televised anywhere on planet earth. The game recap (below) clocks in at just 197 words on the NBA's official website. If it is possible for the NBA to care less about this game, I need to see a demonstration.
Jimmer Fredette scored 17 points and Luke Babbitt added 15 to lead the New Orleans Pelicans to a 98-86 victory over the Miami Heat on Saturday night in the preseason opener for both teams.
Chris Bosh shot 3 for 13 for Miami and Dwyane Wade was 2 of 7.
The Pelicans used a 20-5 run to end the second quarter to turn a six-point Heat lead into a 44-35 halftime advantage. New Orleans hit five 3-pointers in the run.
New Orleans finished 14 of 32 from behind the arc in the game at the KFC Yum! Center. Fredette and Babbitt combined to go 8 of 14.
While it was technically a home game for the defending Eastern Conference champions, most of the sellout crowd of 20,074 cheered the four Pelicans with local ties. Eric Gordon played college ball at Indiana University, Darius Miller and Anthony Davis played for the University of Kentucky, and Russ Smith played at the University of Louisville.
James Ennis led Miami with 17 points. Davis, who played only in the first half, finished with five points, four rebounds and three blocks for the Pelicans. Smith, playing only in the second half, scored 12.
There is not a whole lot to add to that considering I was unable to watch or listen to the game. Alexis Ajinca did not play in the game but is expected to play tonight in Atlanta. Again, the game will not be televised.
Anthony Davis jammed his left index finger in 1st half. X-rays were negative. He is available to return to the game in 2nd half— Jim Eichenhofer (@Jim_Eichenhofer) October 5, 2014
No word yet if that minor ding is going to effect Davis's availability tonight.
New Orleans plays Atlanta Tonight
Again, to reiterate, the game will not be televised. By Fox Sports New Orleans or Fox Sports South, who covers the Hawks. This is equal parts embarrassing and hilarious. This is 2014 where we can watch the Premier League on Saturday morning followed by 10+ college football games at a time. From your cellphone you can watch every NFL game if you use Verizon. The only way to watch the Pelicans play the Hawks tonight is to go to Atlanta. Or you can listen on the radio, like 75 years of technological advancements haven't occurred.
Television Deal Specifics
And based on the current cap formula, the salary cap for a $5.9B BRI would be around $88M per team...— Adam Reisinger (@AdamReisinger) October 6, 2014
That is a ton of money. Hypothetically the salary cap in the summer of 2016 is around $88 Million. The Pelicans, of course, already have Jrue Holiday and Tyreke Evans locked up that year for right around $22 Million. This gives New Orleans $66 Million to re-sign Anthony Davis and whatever core pieces they prefer.
It also will effect how much salary cap room they have, as the cap hold for Ryan Anderson (an unrestricted free agent) will be 150% of his previous salary or $12.75 Million. AD's max contract will be $20-25 Million (see this excellent article from Bourbon Street Shots). Even if Omer Asik is re-signed for $12 Million a season that commits the Pelicans to just $72 Million in salary commitments with Holiday, Evans, Anderson, Asik, and Davis under contract/Bird Rights.
It appears that Dell Demps was playing a longer game than many cared to admit. Locking up Holiday and Evans to contracts which run through the 2016-17 season when everyone else is signing a contract with an out before then looks pretty smart. That is before I even dig into how ridiculous of a bargain Tyreke looked like just this summer when wings of his caliber went for 33% more money.
Also, one final note. AD's contract will take effect after the new TV deal takes place (and possibly the final season before another NBA lockout). This summer he is going to receive and almost assuredly sign a max five year deal similar in structure to Kyrie Irving's. It will be for a lot more money though.