NBA Draft Lottery: As Pelicans win top overall pick, likely Zion Williamson, path to keeping Anthony Davis suddenly opens up
A look at all the different options the Pelicans have between Zion Williamson and Anthony Davis
In an absolute stunner, the New Orleans Pelicans have won the 2019 NBA Draft Lottery and will have the No. 1 overall pick -- which is a virtual certainty to be Duke's Zion Williamson -- in the upcoming draft. Well, that is if the Pelicans keep the pick. Suddenly there are a bevy of options in front of newly hired Pelicans Executive Vice President of Basketball Operations David Griffin, who might well have an opportunity now to keep Anthony Davis in New Orleans.
A quick rundown of New Orleans' options:
- Draft Zion Williamson and keep Davis: This is the dream scenario. Hopefully getting Zion is enough, along with Jrue Holiday, to convince Davis that New Orleans has the makings of a Big 3. Along with the Pelicans being able to pay Davis a lot more money than anyone else, maybe this can convince him to reconsider his stance on wanting out.
- Trade Williamson and keep Davis: Whether this is in a pre-draft trade for the rights to the No. 1 pick, or after the draft once New Orleans has already selected Williamson, the Pelicans would certainly get a monster haul for a package that included Williamson's rights. This would be, perhaps, a way to bring in an established star player to pair with Davis and Holiday, which would again be aimed at keeping Davis.
- Trade Davis and start rebuild around Zion: If A.D. is still adamant he wants out, the Pelicans can now draft Williamson, their future franchise cornerstone, and pair him with the obviously huge haul they would get for Davis to put together one of the better young rosters in the league. I'm looking right at the Lakers, who wound up with the No. 4 pick on Tuesday. Suddenly that package centered on Brandon Ingram, Lonzo Ball, Kyle Kuzma and Josh Hart looks a lot sexier with this year's No. 4 pick attached to it. That's five pretty premium young players to go with Zion. Maybe then you move Jrue Holiday and truly start the rebuild with seven or eight young players that every team in the league would be envious of in terms of future potential.
However this shakes out, what an incredible break for the Pelicans to land the No. 1 overall pick. This is the stuff that makes, or in this case, potentially saves franchises. Obviously, Griffin and his staff have a lot of options and a lot to work through, but this is by far the sunniest day in New Orleans since Davis made it known he wanted out.
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