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Game On: New Orleans Pelicans @ Phoenix Suns

Published: November 10, 2013

What a game. It would be impossible to address anything Pelicans-related right now without mentioning Anthony Davis’s absolute dominance against the Lakers the other night. Quite frankly, the results of Phoenix, LA, Utah, etc. matter little in the long-run performance of this franchise. This is Anthony Davis’s team and Anthony Davis’s time, and we are privileged to witness the opening act in the career of the NBA’s next mega-superstar. At one point in the game, Joel Meyers referred to AD as “Franchise.” I love it.

While many of you will be watching the Saints-Cowboys game and hating all that is Dallas, I will be League-Passing it and watching the Pelicans seek vengeance upon a Phoenix team that they had little excuse to lose to last Tuesday.


Eric Gordon returns to Phoenix a little over a year removed from Phoenixgate. It is a storyline that is slowly fading into background noise, and after exclusively covering Gordon as my first site assignment (and thus becoming very frustrated), I am putting it behind me. Gordon has been relentless attacking the basket lately, and in two underrated moves of deference, found Davis on two fast-break opportunities vs. the Lakers , thereby rewarding him for running the floor. What Gordon has brought to our offense has been irreplaceable. He is very good at attacking and beating hedges and getting to the rim.

The Pelicans lack any frontcourt post option outside of Davis (who is still learning), and against the Lakers, the Pelicans ran a play to establish low-post position for Davis. Once Davis had the ball in the post, they ran Jrue off a Smith screen and got a wide open jumper. As Davis becomes more comfortable in the post, expect more of this.

Onto Phoenix. This team is not, how do you say, very good. Dragic is hurt, Gortat has been shipped to Washington, and the tank is there, it’s just being re-fueled right now. I don’t buy this 4-2 start, and I don’t believe many others do either.

Eric Bledsoe is this team’s engine. Shut him down, and if you still lose, throw up your hands and question existence. Bledsoe is a terror on defense and is very good at getting to the rim on offense.

The best NBA defenses are designed to take away high-efficiency shots. You can’t take away everything, so you take away the good things and live with the results. With Bledsoe, that means letting him beat you from deep, because he is a poor 3 point shooter. If you can limit his penetration, you severely hamstring Phoenix’s ability to generate good shots from drive/kicks. Limiting Bledsoe starts w/ pick and roll defense. The Suns have some shooters, and if Jrue and whatever big steps out to defend the P/R can contain Bledsoe without much help, the Pelicans should be able to force bad offense and get out in transition after bad shots or turnovers.

I will be watching the game on my computer, so it might be hard to binge-Tweet, but I will try to keep all you Saints fans up to speed on the game.



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