The Pelicans preseason schedule has been announced, but it’s highly unlikely any of the games will be televised locally anywhere in New Orleans. How important is it for the franchise to start airing at least a couple of exhibition games each year?
Jason: Are we talking about the preseason? It's not important at all. Next question.
Kevin: I find this completely absurd and inexcusable. There is so much dead space on Fox Sports New Orleans that there really is no reason to not broadcast these games, and with this basketball team still needing to lure a reluctant fan base, limiting any available exposure is just counterproductive.
Jamile: I'll never understand why the NBA in general and the Pelicans specifically hate to televise or otherwise promote preseason games to their fullest extent. You would think the New Orleans front office would welcome the chance to pump up their fan base, especially for a team like the Pelicans with two big stars and a lot of catching up to do after years of apathy-inducing basketball.
Just look at the month long sports tease that is the NFL preseason. The No Fun League spends an entire month mandating daily media availability and even produces tv shows to dramatize the preseason. The Pelicans — more than most franchises — need to take advantage of every opportunity to get their product in front of fans so it's a real shame that they continue to punt this from a media perspective.
Preston: The Pelicans brass has not done enough in the Gulf South to spread the fandom of the 15-year-old New Orleans based franchise. Changing the name and acquiring superstar talents in Anthony Davis and DeMarcus Cousins helps, but the team needs to do more to engender members of the community to embrace the Pels like they have the Saints. This can be done a variety of ways, but first and foremost, you've gotta televise the games!
David: Are they trying to build interest in the franchise? Toiling away in the dark doesn't seem like a good move. There are just four preseason games and actual NBA superstars are going to log far more substantial minutes than we ever see in NFL preseason.
Zachary: Very important. What's been one of the biggest reasons the Pelicans are an afterthought in New Orleans? Indifference. New Orleans has two legitimate stars on hand going into arguably their most pivotal season in franchise history, people need to get engaged and the best way to advertise their product is through television exposure.
Oleh: Exhibition games obviously do not count for anything in the standings, but they're the first chance for fans to see the new team every year. The 2017/18 season is particularly intriguing, given many feel it’s make-or-break time for the Pelicans. Cousins future in New Orleans probably hinges on a playoff berth, while Alvin Gentry and Dell Demps likely will be afforded just one more chance to get it right.
In this ever-expanding digital age, radio remains the only source for coverage in preseason. Sorry, but it’s a bad look for Fox Sports New Orleans and the Pelicans that they can’t come to terms on some agreement. Is it too much to ask for just one televised game? How about a livestream through through the team’s website or maybe the Pelicans app? Something, anything???
Brett: It is always important to televise in the local market. The Pelicans are dropping the ball. These same fans may choose not to go to games out of spite until well after the Saints season has concluded. Ideally, the Pelicans should air at least a couple of exhibition games to generate (yet more) hype for the season.
Travis: This seems like a mistake! As long as Boogie and AD and Rondo and Jrue are all wearing Pels uniforms, these games should be seen! Many predict they will be a fascinating watch and I'll wait for the oral history of this team to come out in about 10 years. What happens during those many off days now afforded by the NBA? Will Big Cuz host a ceviche party on an off day in LA? Will AD take everybody out for hot dogs if they have an extra day off in Chicago? Get this team on TV!