Pelicans Go BIG Against the Magic

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Published: October 29, 2014

For 69 beautiful seconds in the 4th quarter last night, the Pelicans line up featured the three-headed monster of Davis, Anderson, and Asik… at the same time. The gigantic lineup included Gordon and Evans at the two guard spots and resulted in a steal, 2 trips to the line, and a turnover.

All right, fine! Not a lot happened during that little more than a minute of play, but it was an interesting wrinkle. It immediately makes sense on offense. Evan penetrates off a screen from Davis or Asik, and he looks for Ryno or Gordon in the corner, passes, or goes to the hoop. Or whatever. The point is that you have a guy that can penetrate, two guys who can shoot from 3, and Anthony Davis. The offense will work out.

Defense was the more interesting side of the ball as the Pelicans ran a 2-3 zone. Obviously, zone defense isn’t something you see often in the NBA, and I doubt we see this line up because of that limitation. However, young and/or bad teams tend to struggle adjusting to the zone. The Dallas Mavericks had a nice zone defense package they ran with some success a few years back. What did you guys think when you saw all 3 bigs on the court? Is it just a gimmick, or do you think it has potential to be a standard part of the playbook?

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