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Pelicans move up in power rankings after several competitive games

Operation #TankFlight got off to a rough start on Sunday.

Anthony Davis is officially done for the season with injuries to his shoulder and knee. Earlier today we learned Davis has been playing with a torn labrum for three years. That the New Orleans Pelicans put short term goals ahead of the long term health of the franchise, in this case the cornerstone of the entire roster, comes as no surprise. Let's go through a list of recent shortsighted moves under the Dell Demps regime.

When Dell Demps took over in New Orleans in 2010 he traded away 2009 first round pick Darren Collison in a deal to get Trevor Ariza. Later that same summer he traded away 2010 first round pick Craig Brackins (not of his own making) for Jason Smith. Just a month before the season he traded away the then-Hornets 2011 future first round pick (eventually Tobias Harris) for Jerryd Bayless. In just THREE MONTHS on the job Demps traded away THREE first round picks.

Wait! It gets better. A month later (!) he traded Bayless and Peja Stojakovic for Jarrett Jack. In 2013 he traded away the draft rights to Nerlens Noel (Pelicans first official selection after the brand change) and the 2014 future first round pick (eventually Elfrid Payton) for Jrue Holiday. The following summer out went their 2015 future first round pick (eventually Sam Dekker) for Omer Asik.

For all the hope of the Pelicans landing a player in the draft, an overwhelming stack of evidence tells us Demps is going to trade the pick if he's still the general manager. Let's go to the power rankings, where the Pelicans move up thanks to the heroics of Jrue Holiday and Tim Frazier this week.

Last Week: 25 - This Week: 22

Anthony Davis is done for the season and set to undergo surgeries on his left knee and left shoulder. The injuries will increase his games-missed total to 68 for his first four seasons in the league, could cost him $24 million over the next five years (if he doesn't earn an All-NBA selection), and will likely keep him from playing in the Olympics this summer. The Pelicans are 2-6 without after Sunday's win over the Clippers.


Last Week: 24 - This Week: 22

The tone for the "most frustrating season" of Alvin Gentry's NBA career was actually set rather early, which you realize once you hark back to New Orleans' season opener at Golden State and remember that he was forced to start Kendrick Perkins and Nate Robinson that night thanks to the Pels' sizable injury list. But now it's official: Anthony Davis has been shut down for the rest of the season (and possibly this summer's Olympics in Rio) courtesy of shoulder and knee woes that mean that The Brow has averaged 65 games played in his four NBA seasons ... and that you're going to have to live with that H&R Block commercial if you want him to see during the final 20-odd days of the regular season.

Sports Illustrated

Last Week: 25 - This Week: 26

Their season has become team mismanagement for dummies. Two of their five best players were already injured, the season was going nowhere, so why was Anthony Davis playing through a torn labrum in the first place? They could have sat him out for the season weeks earlier and tanked even harder. What a step backward it’s been.

CBS Sports

Last Week: 23- This Week: 23

They just lost Anthony Davis for the year, but I'd rather not talk about it. The Pelicans beat the Clippers with eight guys, hung with the Blazers in Davis' last game and embarrassed the Kings before that. If New Orleans was playing meaningful games, a lot more people would be talking about how great Jrue Holiday has been.