Pelicans Get Blown Out by Clippers Yet Again

Published: March 2, 2014

Let’s be honest – this team never really stood a chance. Three minutes into the game, the Pelicans trailed 10-3 and Anthony Davis was heading to the bench with his second foul.

Game over.

Within minutes, the lead was up to 17 and Davis only returned for four minutes in the second quarter before picking up his third foul. The Clippers got wide open three’s and transition dunks, basically whatever they wanted for the rest of the night, and the end result is a 108-76 Los Angeles win. The sad part, though? The Clippers were messing around most of this game, going through the motions at about 70%, and they still demolished this overmatched Pelicans team.

The Mardi Gras road trip has been brutal so far, but the Pelicans have some winnable games against the Lakers and at Sacramento to close it out. Then, they return home to play 11 of their next 13 at the Smoothie King Center – many of which are winnable. They need to erase nights like this from their memories and get back to playing respectable defense, while simultaneously getting the ball to their superstar on the other end.

Tonight was an embarrassment, and it is a deflating feeling when you enter a game and don’t even feel like you have a chance to win regardless of what you do. That is what happened tonight to a Pelicans team that has lost seven straight, but has at least been competitive in most of those games. Tonight, they weren’t, and that speaks as much to the Pelicans as it does to the red-hot Clippers.

Notes and Observations

– So, let’s start with the good. Should be quick. Austin Rivers was ultra aggressive tonight, scoring 19 points on 14 shots, and he also had some ‘Kobe Assists’ as a few layups rolled out but were put back in. Rivers joined Tyreke Evans as the only two semi-effective offensive players for the Pelicans tonight.

– Tyreke Evans was aggressive as well, and he even knocked down a couple three balls. He was missing everything at the rim early, but those jumpers opened up some things for Tyreke later on in the game, and he also had some beautiful assists to Stiemsma that got him going when he had to enter for Davis, and then Withey due to foul trouble.

– Ajinca showed some flashes on the offensive end and had a double-double as he went for 11 and 10 in 29 minutes.

– I like that Monty is giving the young guys some run. For the second game in a row, Rivers got more minutes than Roberts. Also, Withey came in before Stiemsma and neither Aminu or Morrow played at all, as Monty went with Miller and Babbitt instead.

– That is all for the good.

– Eric Gordon was unwatchable tonight. Not only did he miss 12 of the 13 shots he took, but his ball handling was terrible and his defense was non-existent. Gordon is making nearly $15 mil per year and if somebody would have tuned into this game, not knowing who any of the players were, they would have said that Darren Collison and Matt Barnes would vastly superior players in almost every way. You know, the two guys the Clippers got for a little more than the league minimum? Gordon was -45 tonight. Says it all.

– Anthony Davis got bullied by both Blake Griffin and the refs tonight. From the little we saw of him, Davis probably wouldn’t have had a great game regardless, but the refs treated him like a scrub out there and never once gave him the benefit of the doubt on any calls. Honestly, I have never seen a star player get treated with as little respect as he does, and it’s a shame. The guy is 30-40 pounds lighter than DeAndre Jordan and Blake Griffin, yet every time he touched them, they went flying. But how can you blame them when the refs call it? Don’t hate the players, hate the game, right?

– Brian Roberts.

– Monty said he would try to get the young guys more time down the stretch, presumably so Demps can evaluate them as he heads into the summer. Miller, Babbitt, and Withey responded by going 0-12 in 36 minutes. All 3 of Withey’s shot attempts were swatted and neither Babbitt or Miller ever looked comfortable or got an open look.

– Next game is Monday night at Sacramento, then Tuesday on NBA TV at the Lakers.


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