Pelicans take down Nets

The Nets called two plays tonight.  High pick and roll with a center.  Post up for wing guy.  Oh wait, there were three plays – they ran a wonderful misdirection play in the fourth to get a wide open shot for Joe Johnson from three.  Other than that, it was pretty much the other two options.  It wasn’t that effective for the Nets, though.  Joe had a short stretch where he was effective, usually against Babbitt or Dante Cunningham.  Thad Young had a slightly longer stretch where he was effective, usually against Babbitt and Pondexter.  Otherwise, it was a lot of empty possessions.

On the other side, the Pelicans played good team basketball and had two stretches, including one really ugly 10-possession disaster, where they just couldn’t get out of their own way and were making unforced mistake after mistake.

The game was a blow-out if not for those lengthy brain farts.


  • Pondexter had his career high with 25 points.  This team just continues to have guys come through and help carry them.  He was an effective defender on Joe Johnson, ran the floor, and knocked down his open looks.  Only two forays to the hoop that were probably not the best for Pondexter tonight.
  • The Corpse of Deron Williams had two really nice crossovers early in the game that generated wide open shots Williams couldn’t finish.  That’s really the best I could say for him.  $23 million a year.
  • Tyreke was clearly pacing himself like he was against the Raptors.  Reportedly he’s not been feeling well and he settled for a lot of bad shots tonight after not being able to drive.  He did still find a bunch of guys for open looks, so can’t kill him too hard.
  • In 48 minutes, Asik and Ajinca produced 22 points on 12 shots, 17 rebounds, 3 assists, 2 steals, 3 blocks, 7 turnovers and 9 fouls.  A mix of good and bad, but definitely more good than bad.
  •  Ajinca continues to get more acclimated to NBA speed, but he’s still a horrible foul magnet.  You can’t expect to get more than 20 minutes out of him in a game.  If Ajinca and Asik could both be brought back next year for a combined 10-12M, I’d be good with it.  And we could refer to them as Omexis.  Omex for short.
  • Babbitt’s shooting numbers are getting sick. 51% from three for the season.  Guy is a wreck defensively, but he competes and since he’s back to shooting freely again, he’s become more valuable on that end of the court.  In some respects, I think having no Anderson, Davis or Holiday helps him.  In the back of his mind, he’s thinking “I need to shoot to help this team win.” not “there are dudes out here who are supposed to get these shots, are they open? Should I pass? Oh crap, I’m guarded now.”
  • 26 assists on 38 made baskets for the Pelicans.  Sharin’ it!
  • Of course, 20 turnovers.  This is the true effect of not having Davis, Holiday and Anderson.  Holiday make fewer mistakes, and Davis and Anderson are finishers who almost never turn the ball over.
  • Omer Asik gets three Screen Awards for excellent picks that freed shooters.  At one point he set such a good screen, Gordon sauntered over to the top of the arc, caught a pass, set his feet, scratched his nose, read War & Peace, and then drilled the shot before Markel Brown could get out to him.  And Brown was trying hard too.

Next game is Friday against the Heat again!  Lets see if the crazy train will roll on!


9 responses to “Pelicans take down Nets”

  1. All aboard!  Another fun one to watch…what a story it would be to somehow get this rag-tag bunch to bring home the 8th seed…SA loses 4th in a row and now we are 4 behind them…OKC going to pass them up for sure heading for a higher seed…A Pels victory over Miami in a packed SKC on ESPN would be the icing on a great week given the unexpected results!

  2. Early in the fourth I saw something our guards haven’t done much this season, draw a foul on a layup as Norris was determined to get to the rim with no regard for the defender. Honestly I think the old “Veteran” cliche is applicable in this situation, sure these aren’t the best teams but the leadership and communication from our players is really helping out. Did you hear Qpon Mic-Ed up out there, he was really talking on defense communicating like Monty wants. Ajinca is playing so much better, like yu said still foul prone, but not as bad as before. Definitely a serviceable player for the future. Surprisingly Asik must have got hand replacement surgery as he was catching balls tonight. Good overall win, let’s keep this rolling and building chemistry on this roster.

  3. The Man crush you guys have on Ryan Anderson is borderline scary. A dead body plays more defense then him and when he’s not hitting the 3 point shot she is about as worthless and a Eddie Murphy R&B album.

  4. A lot of free agent to be Pelicans look like keepers: Ajinca, Babbitt, Cole, Cunningham.  Hope we can keep them.  And Q-Pon’s contract looks like a great value, especially with the cap about to rise.

  5. nolaboy76 I will say this – Are some possibly guilty of using recency bias with regard to Anderson and forgetting who he was prior to this season? 
    There are many examples of a player returning to form in their second season after a major injury. Remember, Ryno had no offseason conditioning essentially. If he enters this summer healthy and can focus on conditioning, isn’t it more likely that he returns to form (where he was consistently amongst the highest in the entire league in Net Rtg) than he just continues to struggle for the rest of his career? 
    The hardest thing for people to do is not weigh yesterday more than the six months prior to yesterday. But the 6 months prior to yesterday help far more when trying to predict the future than yesterday.

  6. Michael McNamara nolaboy76 I agree with your reply and statically Ryan was playing great before the injury but like you guys say on your podcast the eye test tells me different about Ryan’s game. His defense has always been down right bad in my opinion and if he’s not hitting 3’s at a high clip then he’s pretty useless. The New Orleans sports media loves the guy and never speak the truth about his game. 2 me the Pelicans can only keep Ryan Anderson if they can find some on who can play on the low block with him on the 2 unit.

  7. 504ever nolaboy76 Michael McNamara I was talking more about someone who can also score in the post. AD will one day but that’s not his game right now.  Asik can defend the post but he and Ajinca are not efficient enough in that area to me. When Anderson was playing in Orlando he had Howard to dominated the post which allowed him to jack up 3’s all day. Right now AD’s game is very much more jump shooting from the elbow or free throw line area. Also Asik mostly scores when one of the guards help create an opportunity for him. The Pelicans have a ton of money invested in Ryan who’s role is similar to the Spurs Matt Bonner who make $915,243 not $8,491,500.

  8. Very tit-for-tat, open free flowing game, wasn’t used to it at all, although entertaining… 
    I’m stoked, we’ve needed to get over these sub-.500 teams all year, we’ve got a good number of those coming up over the next 2 weeks, fingers crossed we can play like this but fix up the points conceded on turnovers… it kept the nets in the game.
    I agree with the above I feel O.Asik has started playing better ball since the injuries and producing what I saw in his first game for the Pel’s, some really nice offensive rebound put backs… the poor guy could get a punch in the face and ref’s still won’t call it but.
    Young player ‘Brown’ from the Nets is someone to watch.

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