Pelicans Dominate Battle of the Backups in 106-87 Victory over Nets

Published: April 3, 2016

For the first 5 1/2 minutes of today’s game in Brooklyn, the Pelicans looked worse than a D-League team. Their first 10 possessions consisted of seven missed shots (two of them blocked), five turnovers, and zero points scored. Their play was sloppy, uncoordinated, and quite frankly, even worse than most expected even considering the players on the floor. Then, starting at around the 4 minute mark of the first quarter, things started to turn. Quickly.

Let’s call it the Tim Frazier effect.

From the moment Frazier first checked in (4:35 remaining in the first quarter) through the end of the game, the Pelicans outscored the Nets 104-80. Frazier played in 37:21 of that 40:35, finishing with a game high +/- of 30 in a 19 point victory. He made 7 of his 11 shots – only two of which were not attempted in the paint or beyond the arc – finishing with 19 points. He also dished out an impressive 13 assists while refraining from committing a single turnover. Oh, and he picked up 3 steals as well. The Pelicans outscored the Nets 29-4 in fast break points, and Frazier was undoubtedly the most essential piece in making that happen.

Regarding the topic of the hour: the Pelicans can extend a qualifying offer of $1.2 million to Frazier this offseason, giving them the right to match any offer from other teams. However, because they do not have his Bird rights, they have to either fit him into cap space or use a cap exception to sign him.

It wasn’t just Frazier who excelled, though he certainly played a part in the success of other Pelicans players. Apart from Toney Douglas, every Pelicans player who attempted a shot scored more than one point per field goal attempt. Babbitt led the team with 21 points and 3-5 from 3-point range, and also was tied for 2nd on the team in assists. Ajinca put up 16 on only 9 attempts, swatting away 4 shots to go along with it. Jordan Hamilton added 13 points while leading the team in rebounds with 11.

Surprisingly enough, this game ended up being really fun to watch. Lots of contributions all around to get a win that some of the fan base may not have wanted, but the players certainly did, which is enough for me.

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