The Pelicans remain on track for the playoffs, but it’s anything but certain they can stay on right path. For at least a night though, New Orleans got a much needed 123-95 victory over the Memphis Grizzlies, in a game they had to have following a four-game losing streak at the hands of the Rockets, Trail Blazers, Cavaliers and Thunder.
New Orleans received a nice boost from E’Twaun Moore and his game-high 30 points on a career-high seven three pointers, but he wasn’t alone. Baby-faced Nikola Mirotic poured in 25 on 10/12 to go along with 28 and 12 from the Anthony Davis, and 15 and six from Jrue Holiday.
However, the biggest story of the night may have been the ankle injury suffered by bench scoring guard, Ian Clark. Clark had been instrumental in the Pelicans 17-13 run Post Boogie, often providing point off the bench when the Pelicans have needed it most. With initial X-Rays coming back negative and MRI results pointing to a return in 5-10 days, New Orleans looks to have dodged a bullet, but we still ponder whether it’s prudent to seek a out a particular free agent out with Larry Drew’s 2nd 10-day contract expiring today.
In the meantime, the Pelicans face the prospect of finding themselves outside of the playoffs if things go awry. The Nuggets, Wolves and Jazz all hold tiebreakers over our heroes as New Orleans can only hope to earn one against San Antonio and add it to the one they have over Oklahoma City.
Darius Miller has posted a negative net rating in every game but one in the past month, and looks less and less confident with each passing week. He routinely passes the shot he should have taken, and lacks the overall aggressiveness someone with his shooting prowess should carry.
The Suns will not need much help, though help could be on the way according to Dave King, Editor of BrightSideoftheSun.com. Devin Booker and TJ Warren, though unlikely, may play in this contest afterall. They join Josh Jackson, a bright spot who has scored 15 or more points in 11 straight contests.
The real challenge will be on Golden State on the second night of a back to back, this Saturday. With the second seed in hand, many fans are calling for the Warriors to bench their stars, but it’s not going to happen. Expect a full 30-35 minute allotment to Klay, Draymond, KD and the gange. The Pelicans will have to earn it.
Join Oleh, Kevin, Dave and I as we break down the wild, wild west, the Pelicans’ playoff chances, the Suns chances at the upset, and much, much more.
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