The New Orleans Pelicans started the 2015-16 season just as they ended the 2014-15 season, losing to the Golden State Warriors. After a very late night in Oakland the Pelicans packed up and took a short flight to Portland, likely arriving in their hotel well after midnight on the West Coast. Awaiting them, the rebuilt Portland Trail Blazers led by 2013 Rookie of the Year Damian Lillard.
Anthony Davis had one of his worst games in a New Orleans uniform against the Warriors. Do I expect that to be a consistent thing? Is he in for a down year? Such a discussion is patently ridiculous in my mind. Davis, for all his talents, is still lacking in the shot creation department. Last night the Warriors forced Davis to go it alone, collapsing on any roll to the basket and flying out to keep him out of rhythm on pick-and-pops. Golden State is a special team and remains a terrible match-up for the Pelicans, especially when New Orleans is 50% or worse due to health.
Tonight Davis has a chance to get back on track. He showed a flash of that deadly mid-range jumper in the fourth quarter burying three of four shots at the top of the key. Alvin Gentry wasn't playing Davis in some heroic attempt at a miraculous comeback. Getting Davis into a positive mindset and letting him see the ball go through the basket a couple times should do wonders against the much less experienced Trail Blazer front line.
Jrue Holiday, who sat out last night thanks to his back-to-back protocol, will start tonight at point guard according to Gentry. Behind him it will be interesting to see if Ish Smith separated himself from Nate Robinson for reserve minutes. Smith was far more impressive in the box score and I found his defensive effort to be miles ahead of anything Krypto-Nate provided.
For more on this match-up be sure to check out our game preview.
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|2015-16 NBA Regular Season|
|October 28, 2015, 9:00 PM Central|
|Moda Center - Portland, OR|
|Fox Sports New Orleans|
|Charter - 810, Cox - 1038, DirecTV - 678, U-Verse - 1757|
|WRNO 99.5 FM|
|Jrue Holiday||PG||Damian Lillard|
|Eric Gordon||SG||C.J. McCollum|
|Dante Cunningham||SF||Al-Farouq Aminu|
|Anthony Davis||PF||Meyers Leonard|
|Kendrick Perkins||C||Mason Plumlee|
|Advanced Stats (2015-16) via NBA Stats|
|-16.3 (6th)||Net Rating||N/A|
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