FIN (Pelicans beat Rockets)

Published: April 17, 2014

It was a fun game for a season wrap.  While the Rockets organization weren’t taking the game that serious (Dwight Howard chucked a three?) their scrubs were taking it as seriously as the Pelicans scrubs were taking it.  Most of those guys were playing to try to leave some sort of impression out there.

In the end, it was a game of contrasting styles – which I found entertaining.  The Rockets were jacking up every long range bomb they could.  The Pelicans were driving relentlessly to the basket – usually after faking a three.  The result were a lot of made threes for the Rockets (14-30 shooting.  sheesh) and lots of baskets at the rim for the Pelicans – or kickout/dumpoff assists.  Evans could get wherever he wanted at any time in the game – doing frequent 1 on 3 fast breaks where the 3 didn’t have a chance to stop him – or driving into packed space and simply bullying his way to the rim.  Dude is solid.

Everybody the Pelicans ran out there seemed to contribute a little.  Observations!

  • Roberts got 4 minutes and 4 free throws – enabling him to lock up the statistical free throw crown this season.  He’s in the record books now.  Good job, Roberts.  You deserve it.
  • For about 12 minutes tonight the Pelicans center was Al Farouq Aminu.  Since the Rockets center was Josh Powell or Montiejunas, it didn’t matter that much.  Montiejunas did get a bunch of offensive rebounds, something he normally doesn’t, but the Pelicans still stretched the lead during that time.
  • I loved that Dwight Howard shot a three and McHale immediately pulled him.
  • Austin took three mid-range jumpers tonight, shocking everyone.  Really.  Jumpers, not floaters.  He stuck two of them.
  • Keeping with Austin, his catch and shoot remains deadly.  He ended up losing the catch and shoot 3-point crown to Eric Gordon in the end, but not by much.  Eric Gordon hit catch and shoot threes at 45.7% this year.  Rivers hit them at 45.5%.  That ranks 11th in the entire league amonst players who attempted at least 1 catch and shoot three per game.
  • Withey’s help defense in the paint remains excellent.  He had a real impact out there tonight when the Rockets forgot to shoot when they reached the three point line.
  • Look – I wasn’t Stiemsma’s biggest fan . . . but why did the team release him and bring in Ely?  Couldn’t they have just left him on the bench or something?  Did he poop in Monty’s desk drawer? I’m just a little confused why they booted him before season end – and then replaced him with a veteran retread and not even a youngster.   Perhaps they are trying to scratch Melvin Ely’s agent’s back?  It’s Dan Fegan.  Anyone like anyone on this list as a Pelican next year?  I’m not that excited by the names.  Those that could be had, that is.
  • Apparently, per Jen Hale the Pelicans want Morrow back.  That’s good.  I was assuming she was going to Hale bomb me and tell me they thought Morrow was too caught up in this whole new-fangled “shooting thing” and were no longer interested.
  • Darius Miller had moments again – but then you look at the statline and you can’t help cringe.  He had 9 points on 7 shots, 3 rebounds, 1 assist, 2 steals.  In 34 minutes.  16-20 minutes?  good deal.  34?  Yikes.
  • Anyone who thinks Evans isn’t worth his contract has their head up their butt.

Thanks to all of you who have been reading over this long, long season.  Knowing you are out there and interested validates the effort we make here, and it makes me smile.

Thanks everyone.


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