New Orleans Pelicans Grades: Pelicans Stumble Versus Rockets


The New Orleans Pelicans started their post All-Star stretch on a sour note, losing by 30 points to the Houston Rockets at home.

To put it simply, the New Orleans Pelicans were defeated in every way, shape and form possible Thursday night.

The Rockets hit 20 three-points and took advantage of 20 Pelicans turnovers to soar past New Orleans. This was a game that could not have gone worse for the Pelicans.

New Orleans also lost one of their newest players to injury. Omri Casspi is expected to be out at least a month, with a broken thumb.

Tonight was not the Pelicans night.

Anthony Davis and DeMarcus Cousins did have great stats tonight. Davis had 29 points, nine rebounds and two blocks. Cousins had 27 points, 14 rebounds, five assists, five steals and four blocks.

Lou Williams led the scoring for Houston, with 27 points on 7-11 shooting from behind the arc.

129. 169. 99. 69. Final

. JRUE HOLIDAY. D-. Tonight was a complete disaster from Jrue Holiday. Jrue put up six points, four rebounds, four assists, two blocks and a whopping seven turnovers in the game. He seemed to be thinking way too much and not trusting his play. This has to have been a tricky game for Jrue. A new player in the starting lineup and a whole new dynamic to the offense is crazy to deal with as a point guard. Still, he got dominated in every facet of the game by Houston’s guards.. PG

C. E’Twaun Moore failed to do much of anything significant tonight. He did have six points, three rebounds and three assists. However, his defense was the best part of his game once again. Still, that becomes an issue on a team that needs their wings to space the floor. Moore is not the best at that component of the game. That may cause problems going forward.. SG. . E'TWAUN MOORE

Solomon Hill did not seem to benefit much from the changes to the offense. Just four shots in the game and three turnovers is not going to get it done. Hill needs to find some comfort shooting from deep, as his 1-4 line from behind the arc hurt the Pels’ spacing immensely. This is going to be a process with Hill, one he will need to show improvement in.. SF. . SOLOMON HILL. D

. ANTHONY DAVIS. B. Anthony Davis did show his ability to score the basketball once again. However, this is going to be a tough transition from him. He did seem a bit lost on where to go, when someone else was the focus of the offensive set. His defense was surprisingly minimal in its impact tonight. He did what he could to counteract what Houston was able to do in their shooting. It was still not enough.. PF/C

Even in just one blowout loss, DeMarcus Cousins sure made his presence felt. Almost a quintuple-five game for Boogie, who looked like a monster inside the paint. Houston could not shut him down or keep him away from blocks and steals on defense. In time, that seems like it will lead to Pelicans wins. Tough to do that tonight, when Houston was clicking on all cylinders and New Orleans looked completely lost as a team.. C. . DEMARCUS COUSINS. B+

TIM FRAZIER. C. Tim Frazier sure did look rusty in tonight’s game. Frazier put up just two points on 1-6 shooting, to go with five assists and four rebounds. He did looked rattled by Houston’s crafty guards. It is going to take some time for him to return to his effective form. It will be up to him to show New Orleans he deserves the backup point slot, before they go out and get another one to fill that role.. PG.

DANTE CUNNINGHAM. C+. Dante Cunningham did try to space the offense out. However, his slow defense on the Rockets’ quicker wings and troubles to find ways to swing the momentum really hurt the bench unit. Cunningham’s four fouls on defense showed his struggles to adjust to the new defense. Unless Dante catches fire in some of these games, this transition will be very tricky.. SF/PF.

C-. Donuts did not have much impact at all tonight, just like many of the Pelicans. Just six points and two rebounds, to go with two turnovers and three fouls. Houston was in control all night. Donuts had nothing to change that in this game.. C. . DONATAS MOTIEJUNAS

HOLLIS THOMPSON. INC. Hollis Thompson played just five minutes. He made one of his two looks and got to the free throw line. This was just a garbage minutes game for him. Not much to take from it.. SF/SG.

OMRI CASSPI. B. This one hurts. The first game coming from Sacramento and Omri Casspi breaks his thumb. He is likely to be sidelined 4-6 weeks. Another key piece of the Pelicans going down to the injury bug. Omri did shot 5-9 from the field tonight and made two of his four three-point attempts. He can be such a key component to this team. Unfortunately, that will only happen when he returns from this injury.. SF/SG.

Other Observations:

  • Before the “Full Panic Mode” comes from one game, fans have to look at the reality. This is one contest. An underwhelming one, sure. However, there is a lot of time for this team to figure things out. Boogie still has another year after this one and the Pelicans are still in striking distance of the eighth seed. New Orleans Pelicans fans will want sustainable success. That only comes from learning the system together. This will be a process, before this team becomes a viable threat. Tonight was step one in a long journey ahead.

Next: New Orleans Pelicans Release Bench Forward Terrence Jones

That journey continues on the road Saturday Night, where the Pelicans will face of in Dallas against the Mavericks. Tip-off is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. CST.