At the start of the day, the Pelicans had a chance to claim the 8th position in the Western Conference. After the Oklahoma City Thunder lost to the Chicago Bulls last night, New Orleans only needed to beat the 24-35 Celtics.
Honestly, they didn't even come close.
After trailing by 11 in the 2nd quarter, the Pelicans clawed back to take a 3-point lead after halftime, but it was short-lived. Very short-lived. For most of the 4th quarter, Boston controlled the scoreboard, often leading by double-digits, and the Pelicans failed to make a serious run.
The Pelicans have failed to hit the century mark in the scoring column in 4 straight games now and that's two games where the Pelicans have looked out of sorts with Anthony Davis back in the fray. They were fortunate to win against the Detroit Pistons because AD went nuclear. Tonight, he was just very good, by his standards: 29 points, 14 rebounds and 3 blocks.
The biggest detractors came from the point guard position. Tyreke Evans and Norris Cole combined to shoot 7 of 21 for 15 points and committed 12 turnovers (versus just 8 assists). Marcus Smart is proving to be quite a defender, but the numbers shouldn't have been this bad. Conversely, Isaiah Thomas all by himself had 27 points on 8 of 13 from the floor and just 2 turnovers.
Stay tuned for Quentin's full recap coming up a bit later; however, don't expect many pleasantries. The Pelicans got swept on the season by an Eastern Conference team that has had trouble adding to the win column.