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A tale of two halves but New Orleans Pelicans still come up short vs. Orlando Magic, 89-82

Terrence Jones pulled off a fine impression of Anthony Davis, but just like the Brow, it wasn’t enough.

NBA: New Orleans Pelicans at Orlando Magic Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

The New Orleans Pelicans (2-10) lost to the Orlando Magic (5-7) by a final score of 89-82. Anthony Davis did not play due to a right quad contusion, but in his absence Terrence Jones played admirably: 26 points, 9 rebounds, 2 assists and 2 threes. Check out this sequence by the former Houston Rockets benchwarmer.

Following a completely lackluster first half in which the Pelicans started the game a comatose 0-8 from the field, New Orleans turned it into a competitive contest in the second half. Early in the 4th quarter, Buddy Hield’s 18-foot jumper put the Pelicans ahead 70-69. However, the well ran dry soon after as New Orleans only managed to score 12 points in the final 9:30.

So much dribbling, so little ball movement during the final stretch. Numerous times the team was up against the shot clock and had to force a lot of difficult shots to beat the buzzer. One would assume an Alvin Gentry-led team would be able to create quicker shot attempts but maybe that’s asking too much from the ragtag bunch.

Either way, tack on another loss, and with the Philadelphia 76ers knocking off the hapless Washington Wizards, the Pelicans own the worst record in the NBA, again.

If it helps, Jrue Holiday is scheduled to play Friday against the Trail Blazers. Maybe his pal, Anthony Davis will too.

Game Notes:

  • Terrence Jones showed fans he still has something in the tank. For sanity’s sake, let’s hope it continues and the coaching staff takes note.
  • Langston Galloway and E’Twaun Moore combined for 29 points on 28 shots. Not good, not bad — that’s all you can ask from role players trying to fill empty big shoes.
  • Buddy Hield had 8 points, 5 rebounds and 5 assists, but he didn’t look nearly as assertive as he did against the Los Angeles Lakers. The Pelicans could have used that Hield tonight with so many struggling to make shots or just create offense, but alas the rookie’s roller coaster ride continues.
  • Alexis Ajinca was praised by Joel Meyers for his defensive work — he had 3 blocks and changed a few other shots — but he wasn’t without warts. The offense wasn’t there and he missed on key opportunities to collect important defensive rebounds. Out of 14 rebounding chances, he managed to grab just 6 boards.
  • Tim Frazier and Solomon Hill were blah and bleh. Or should it be bleh and blah? Yep, the season may be young but it’s gotten old fast that several Pelicans typically contribute very little on a given night.
  • Orlando had a huge 21-10 points off turnovers advantage and Magic reserves outscored the Pelicans bench group by 11 (42-31).