Media Day Today - The Pelicans will begin the NBA preseason schedule with media day today. Jim Eichenhofer lays out why you should be excited about it here. Last year Monty Williams stated that the team was 100% healthy at media day, then Darius Miller walked in, in a walking boot. Thankfully we should not have to worry about surprise injury news...
Tyreke Evans Hamstring - ...because the Pelicans have already announced an injury! From the link.
The New Orleans Pelicans announced today that guard Tyreke Evans is expected to miss 3-5 weeks with a strained right hamstring.
"Tyreke injured his hamstring playing pickup basketball out of town last week," stated General Manager Dell Demps. "He is back in New Orleans rehabbing with our medical staff. Hopefully, he will be cleared to play before the season-opener."
You might remember that Tyreke Evans injured his ankle in the first preseason game last year. That of course was followed by Ryan Anderson injuring his toe just before the season began. Greg Stiemsma followed that up with an MCL strain.
The season continued in that fashion beginning to end. The Pelicans did not even begin a single game last year 100%. The closest they came was a six game stretch from November 16th to the 29th, where only Stiemsma was missing in action. The team went 4-2 in that stretch. Beyond that every game had an expected contributor (Ryan Anderson, Anthony Davis, Eric Gordon, Tyreke Evans, Jason Smith, or Jrue Holiday) unavailable.
Including preseason the Pelicans under the new name have suited up 90 times. They have been 100% (not even considering bench or rotation players) for 6 games.
Anthony Davis #4 According to Bleacher Report - From Adam Fromal who ranked the top 25 players entering training camp. That puts just LeBron James, Kevin Durant, and Chris Paul ahead of Davis in Fromal's opinion. Combine that with Sports Illustrated putting Davis #6 and we are getting a clearer picture of where national writers put Davis in comparison to his peers. At the very top.
Davis Under Pressure to Make Playoffs? - Again from Bleacher Report. Dan Favale writes that Davis is under pressure this season to get the Pelicans in the playoffs. From who? I guess writers like Favale. This idea that a superstar can drag any collection of talent, regardless of injuries, into the playoffs in the Western Conference needs to be killed with fire. Immediately. If the Pelicans fail to make the playoffs that it is a mark against Davis is absolutely absurd.
Media Day Prep - This article from Tom Ziller is about all you need to cut through the cliches we will be subject to later today. Also, a running #MUSCLEWATCH tracker.
Pelicans GM Dell Demps said on their in-house Black & Blue report that All-Star PF Anthony Davis is now up to 242 pounds.— nakia hogan (@nakiahogan) August 19, 2014
Alexis Ajinca gains 20 pounds this off-season.
Austin Rivers adds 10 pounds and increased upper body strength.
Unfortunately despite all the weight gained, none of that information translated to the Pelicans' OWN PRESS RELEASE detailing the training camp roster and schedule. Where, among other things, they list Anthony Davis at 220 pounds.