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Team RankingPTS/GOPP PTS/G
Southwest Division103.3 (1st)109.3 (5th)
Western Conference5th15th
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Hey, it turns out when Anthony Davis plays like a radiation-breathing mutant pterodactyl with laser eyes, the team plays a lot better. Two straight now that they have a brief stretch of health, and Tyreke Evans could be back this week. Have they dug too deep a hole to climb out of?
Blink, and you're in an eight-game hole. The West isn't running away from them, so much as the Pelicans are punch-drunkenly staggering backward away from the pack. You can blame injuries but it doesn't change the reality.
Injuries are a problem. Not playing defense is a bigger one. The Mavericks were the first soft team on their schedule, and they were blown out Saturday by them. The hole is getting really deep for a team with 45-win aspirations.
It might be time to give up the dream of ever seeing this team healthy. They're in the middle of a horrific schedule stretch to start the season and teams are throwing Mardi Gras on their defense every night. Anthony Davis is seeing triple teams regularly and no one else is healthy enough to take the pressure off. This isn't the worst-case scenario for a start, but it's up there.
"If they're healthy" is basically the Pelicans' preseason ticket marketing slogan at this point. If they can't get healthy this year, they might just need to accept that the basketball gods don't want this core together. They jump up a few spots from our offseason rankings due to how well Alvin Gentry seems to have connected with the team, and the opportunity for them to substantially improve in key areas. In conclusion, Anthony Davis is a radioactive-fire breathing winged dragon-man that's going to start shooting 3's. So that's awesome.
I don't know how the next two games will play out for the Pelicans or Thunder. But I do know that if we don't see him there this weekend, we'll be seeing Anthony Davis in the playoffs very soon.
Are you impressed they're over .500 and battling for a playoff spot into the last two weeks of the season? Or are you underwhelmed by how much they struggle while having Anthony Davis? They are the NBA's example of glass-half-empty, glass-half-Brow.
Beat the Grizzlies and Bucks, lose to the Celtics and Nuggets. They're like a toddler who face-plants when starting to walk too fast.
They beat the Grizzlies, which would have really helped them, had it not been for the fact that they lost to the Celtics. New Orleans is 13-14 vs. the East this season. If they miss the playoffs, that's going to be why.
The basketball gods decided to wait until after the All-Star Break to ruin their season (Anthony Davis out at least two weeks, Ryan Anderson out 2-4 weeks). I don't know whether that's merciful or more cruel. Their making the playoffs seems like it would be a miracle at this point.
2015-16 Team Leaders
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