On a night when the entire country was hypnotized by the possibilities of the future ahead, the New Orleans Pelicans played a basketball game against the Sacramento Kings. When it was over, a 102-94 flashed as the final score, meaning the Pelicans remain winless on the season. An 0-8 start to the 2016-17 regular season now ties the 2004-05 Hornets for the worst start in franchise history.
I am going to be upfront with everyone: I had the game on a secondary screen because a) it was on freaking NBA TV, and I have to jump through all kinds of hoops to watch NBA TV games as a dignified cord cutter; b) I spent way too much time intently watching John King masterfully toggle with an electronic map for hours on end. I am sure that he got killed on social media (who doesn’t), but that man deserves a raise.
Here are some assorted thoughts:
- E’Twaun Moore continues to bring the noise, enhancing the social gumption of those that defended his contract over the summer. Moore has shown an ability to score in different ways — including more than a few ambitious efforts in the post — but his true destiny is as a “three and D” type of wing. The state of a roster is not well if Moore is to be relied upon as a consistent scorer night in and night out.
- I wish I was able to clip some tape from a few of the defensive breakdowns (much more difficult for me to do for an NBA TV game). One possession that comes to mind is when a Kings big (I want to say Kosta Koufos, but I could be wrong), galloped into the lane undeterred for a dunk when it appeared that every Pelican had gotten back. These kinds of lapses add up over the course of a game and stretch out the likelihood of a win for an already limited team.
- Anthony Davis is like your friend that is really good at Call of Duty, posts the best ratio for your squad on a routine basis, but is unable to overcome the general incompetence of you and your teammates. Another stellar line — 34 points, 8 rebounds, 2 steals and 4 blocks — went for naught.
- Tim Frazier lead the team in assists (9), yet I would love to see him force the issue more with his own scoring prowess. The Pelicans are not exactly shooting flames as a unit, and Frazier poses one of the biggest threats to a defense when he is on the floor.
- I thought tonight was going to be Terrence Jones game. Boy was I wrong.
- Instead, Omer Asik was given some extended run to contend with the brute force of the Kings, and he offered his typical capable rebounding in exchange for a mucked up floor on the offensive end. Even in all of his sweaty glory, DeMarcus Cousins boogied all over Asik, leaving one to wonder if Jones should have been given a lengthier look to turbocharge things.
- Despite — in my opinion at least -- looking increasingly more comfortable, Buddy Hield struggled from the field and failed to contribute to the offensive effort. I know the field goal percentage is frightening, but I would bet on Hield finding his rhythm sooner rather than later. He doesn’t look overwhelmed by the game. (Yet.)
Here is a box score to check out at your own leisure.
Check back with us throughout the week as the Pelicans take on the Bucks on Thursday night!