The New Orleans Pelicans have arguably two of the best big man in the league in DeMarcus Cousins and Anthony Davis, yet the Pelicans continue to face issues.
On paper, the Kentucky standouts are putting up 57.3 points and 27 rebounds per game, making them a huge presence in the paint. Although, Davis and Cousins are carrying their weight offensively and defensively; the Pelicans have to clean up a few things.
Chemistry: Adjusting to a system based around Anthony Davis is difficult to adjust to at times. Let’s face it Demarcus Cousins and Anthony Davis can’t play together and it is rubbing off on the rest of the team which creates match-up problems when the front-court consists of Jrue Holiday and E’twaun Moore. Teams have found ways to out play New Orleans thus far, and if players can’t communicate properly then it will have a long-term effect on the season.
Line-up Problems: Head Coach Alvin Gentry clearly isn’t putting the right guys out on the floor, and it’s showing on the court. Playmaker Rajon Rondo and defensive-minded guard Tony Allen need to see more minutes. Once Rondo is set to return, this is an option that Gentry needs to fall back on, because Rondo can control the tempo of a game. As for Allen; he can match-up against any elite guard/forward and is arguably one of the best defenders in the league. He currently plays behind Moore and five-year guard Ian Clark. Allen can play big minutes, as the vet has played over 20+ minutes for Memphis
Davis is reportedly out with a knee injury and his return is up in the air, which creates more pressure for Cousins. Whenever Cousins gets put in the driver’s seat, he tends to let his attitude get the best of him, as we saw in his Sacramento days. He needs to be mentally prepared this season if the Pelicans want to be taken seriously in the West.
Recently, the Pelicans brought in veteran forward Josh Smith which could be a big help while Davis is out. Like Cousins, Smith has had a reputation of being a head case. It might just be a theme in New Orleans.
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