During the New Orleans Pelicans pre-game show yesterday on Fox Sports New Orleans, Jrue Holiday divulged to Jennifer Hale that he is scheduled to see an increase in his minutes restriction in the very near future. He is following a timetable that has been established by the Pelicans medical staff.
Per @JenHale504 Jrue Holiday's minutes are set to go up soon -- in about a week, week and a half.— Oleh Kosel (@Redhopeful) November 21, 2015
Currently, Holiday is limited to 25 minutes a game and missing one game of back-to-backs. His last minutes increase came unexpectedly 3 weeks ago following a loss to the Golden State Warriors on Halloween.
Initially, even that time frame appeared in doubt as he played 27 minutes in that game; however, the Pelicans have monitored him more closely since, not allowing him to surpass the 25-minute barrier. In fact, Jrue has only reached the limit once, in New Orleans loss to the New York Knicks back on November 15th.
What will be Holiday's new minutes restriction? Considering the Pelicans have incrementally increased his playing time in 5-minute blocks since the start of training camp, the likely conclusion would be 30 minutes.
On paper this hike may seem small, but it should provide for better continuity. Alvin Gentry has been removing Holiday early in the first and third quarters and sometimes not putting him back in games altogether during second quarters in order to save him for the fourth and deciding quarter.
This juggling has had an effect on Holiday in finding a desired comfort level. In several games, it was apparent he was looking to force his shot, knowing his spurt was short. Other times, he has been completely invisible and failed to make any kind of beneficial impact at all.
A larger window means Holiday will be able to allow the game to come to him, and he should have a better feel for his teammates and vice versa. For example, in the last five games Ish Smith has spent more than 25 minutes on the floor, he's been rather productive. Conversely, the previous two times he failed to reach that number, Ish was not an important factor.
Continuity matters and it appears a healthy Holiday will soon get to enjoy a little more of it.