New Orleans Pelicans Grades: Pelicans Fall Short Versus Jazz

Mar 6, 2017; Salt Lake City, UT, USA; New Orleans Pelicans guard Jrue Holiday (11) and forward DeMarcus Cousins (0) plead their case to referee Leroy Richardson (20) in the third quarter against the Utah Jazz at Vivint Smart Home Arena. The Utah Jazz defeated the New Orleans Pelicans 88-83. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Swinger-USA TODAY Sports
Mar 6, 2017; Salt Lake City, UT, USA; New Orleans Pelicans guard Jrue Holiday (11) and forward DeMarcus Cousins (0) plead their case to referee Leroy Richardson (20) in the third quarter against the Utah Jazz at Vivint Smart Home Arena. The Utah Jazz defeated the New Orleans Pelicans 88-83. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Swinger-USA TODAY Sports /

The New Orleans Pelicans could not manufacture enough offense to outlast the Utah Jazz, losing 88-83 on the road Monday night.

It was just one of those nights for the New Orleans Pelicans. They faced off against one of the best defenses in the NBA in the Utah Jazz.

The Jazz’s defense and the Pelicans’ offensive struggles were both on display tonight. Both teams played a very sloppy game, as they were both coming on the second night of a back-to-back.

The story of the game for the Pelicans was their inability to make shots. New Orleans started of the game slow, as they shot 27 percent in the first half. They would finish the game shooting 35 percent from the field.

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Utah was not great either, as they finished shooting just under 41 percent. It was an all-around sloppy game and the Jazz happened to play a little bit better tonight. It’s a difficult loss for the Pelicans, as their playoff hopes diminish.

Both teams had a turnover problem tonight. The Jazz and Pelicans finished with just about the same turnovers. New Orleans had 20, while Utah was just one under that. New Orleans will not win many games, when their big three are 13-41 from the field.

Gordon Hayward and Rudy Gobert played well for the Jazz and gave them enough to squeak out the 88-83 win.

A bright spot for the Pelicans was newly acquired guard Jordan Crawford. Jordan, on day one of his 10 day contract, was probably the best player for the Pelicans tonight.  Crawford was 8-15 from the field for 19 points and made a few clutch baskets for the Pelicans, to keep the game competitive.

Final. 88. 118. 83. 69

C. Jrue played a very poor offensive game, but he still played with effort on defense. Holiday finished with four points on 1-9 shooting. He also had five rebounds and three assists. After playing 15 minutes in the first half. Holiday finished the game with only 23 total minutes played and was a spectator for most of the second half. A rough night for Jrue, one he will want to forget as soon as possible.. PG. . JRUE HOLIDAY

. HOLLIS THOMPSON. C-. Hollis Thompson made one long range shot out of four attempts and could not find the net tonight. He only saw eight minutes of the floor and it was partly due to his early shooting struggles.. SG

C-. Solomon Hill has just not been great since the All-Star break has ended. Hill is shooting 16 percent from three since the break has ended and tonight was no different. Hill was 0-4 from the field and 0-3 from three in 20 minutes of play. The Pelicans need shooters now more than ever, with the acquisition of DeMarcus Cousins. Eventually, Hill will have to knock down his three pointers, if he’s going to be a vital roll player on this team.. SF. . SOLOMON HILL

C-. Anthony Davis was 7 for 17 and the combo of him and Cousins could not convert in the paint tonight. Anthony finished the game with 20 points and 12 rebounds. He had one of those rough nights, as did the entire team. It was a case of him not putting the ball in the hoop. Tonight’s game has to be one that he and the Pelicans forget, as they still try to make a big playoff push, to end the season. Davis had a stretch of back-to-back turnovers late in the game, which was the kind of symbolism of the type of struggle New Orleans had the entire game. The Jazz forced them to play a slow paced, low scoring game. Davis also finished the game with five turnovers. Davis will come out next game, trying to avenge his performance tonight.. PF/C. . ANTHONY DAVIS

C. . DEMARCUS COUSINS. C-. DeMarcus Cousins did not have a great outing tonight. He could not get his shots to fall in the paint, similar to Anthony Davis. The Pelicans started off the game 4 of 14 in the painted area and it went downhill from there. Boogie was 5-15 from the field, 1-4 from three and finished the game with just eight rebounds, after his monster rebounding performance against the Lakers the night before. Cousins was affected by the length of Jazz big man, Rudy Gobert. Gobert finished with a double-double and made it hard on the Pelican big men to assert their will all night.

C+. Not a bad night for Tim Frazier, who was pretty scrappy, despite the sluggish game play. Frazier finished the game with seven points, three assists and four rebounds. A small bright spot for the bench, in the tough game against the Jazz.. PG. . TIM FRAZIER

B+. Jordan Crawford, in his first game with the Pelicans, is actually what kept the team close, late in the game. Crawford made all the big shots late in the game for the Pelicans and was New Orleans’ most consistent player. Jordan was 8-15 from the field and 3-7 from three and was the game’s leading scorer for most of the fourth quarter. Crawford was impressive, with the way he handled pressure and was almost always there, when the Pelicans needed a big shot. He finished the game with 19 points and even dished out three assists.. SG. . JORDAN CRAWFORD

E’Twaun Moore was pretty good as far as making shots go, which is something the Pelicans had a rough time with in this outing. Moore was 50 percent from the field and from the three-point line as well. Hopefully, Moore can continue to know down his three pointers, until Hill is off his post All-Star break slump.. SF/SG. . E'TWAUN MOORE. C

PF/SF. . DANTE CUNNINGHAM. C. Dante Cunningham, like most of the Pelican shooters tonight, could not buy a bucket. It was at a point in the first half where he had three consecutive looks from three on the same sequence and missed every last one. Cunningham finished with four points and five rebounds in 26 minutes of play.

C-. 17 minutes and just four rebounds. Pretty much sums up Alexis Ajinca’s night against the Jazz. Not great.. C. . ALEXIS AJINCA

C-. Donatas Motiejunas played just four minutes. Doughnuts across the board for Doughnuts. Did not really notice when he was in the game. Still have not seen much of him in a Pelicans uniform.. C/PF. . DONATAS MOTIEJUNAS

Next: New Orleans Pelicans Pod-Cap: Pels Survive On The Road In Win Versus Los Angeles Lakers

Final Thoughts

New Orleans fought as much as they could with the sloppy play of both teams. It still was not enough.

The New Orleans Pelicans schedule just gets tougher, as they will have to face the Toronto Raptors on Wednesday back at the Smoothie King Center. Tip-off is scheduled for 7:00 p.m. CST.