If you were hoping to see some positives from the New Orleans Pelicans in their final tune-up before the start of the 2017-18 regular season, well, sorry — yeah, that’s all I’ve got!
The Grizzlies started tonight’s contest in ultra high gear, and their effort and execution ran circles around the Pelicans starters throughout the first half. While New Orleans struggled to get good shots and limit the opponent’s open looks, Memphis didn’t have a single issue. For instance, Grizzly rookie Dillon Brooks shot a perfect 5-5 from the three-point line, with all of his attempts coming way too easily.
This man can't miss.— Memphis Grizzlies (@memgrizz) October 14, 2017
12 points in 7 minutes 4-4 from three pic.twitter.com/1ErznWzJZB
Outside of Jrue Holiday aggressively looking for his shot — he scored 14 points on 6-12 shooting in the first half — and DeMarcus Cousins re-entering the game after tweaking his foot, which had sent him momentarily to the bench, there is nothing else worth mentioning.
Zip, zilch, zero.
Oh, it’s a preseason game, for sure, and the Pelicans had nothing to gain from trying to emerge with a victory, but one has to question why the starters played big minutes when intensity, decision-making and all other intangibles were left behind in New Orleans — there are better ways to play possum.
The Grizzlies were up 34-21 after one, 76-52 at halftime, and 115-71 after three quarters. I bet it’s a bit difficult to remember all of those hard-fought contests from last season, right?
Look, I don’t care that Cheick Diallo missed a bunch of early bunnies, nor that Alexis Ajinca proved once more that he shouldn’t see any rotation minutes. This cast isn’t built with illustrious depth so no one expects for the team to rely on fringe rotation players on a regular basis. However, you’ve got to expect better from your core guys when they play a full load during the first 24 minutes.
Minutes clock: #Pelicans starters vs. Grizzlies (first half)— Christian Boutwell (@_CBoutwell) October 14, 2017
E'Twaun Moore: 14
Despite the Grizzlies shooting as well as any benevolent video game, the Pelicans defense did nothing to slow down Memphis. And as for the offense, could New Orleans have looked more discombobulated?
The results may not count, but for a cast that failed to prove anything last season, this final exhibition game was a gigantic dud.
Bad taste in your mouth?