Pelican Debrief continues our season review with a call for a change. New Orleans Pelicans owner Tom Benson has a history of promoting from within. Why not take a chance on former President and General Manager, Danny Ferry?
The New Orleans Pelicans have entered the fourth week of the 2017 postseason. Unfortunately, they have yet to make a decision as to the futures of General Manager Dell Demps and Head Coach Alvin Gentry.
For most NBA franchises, four weeks is an uncharacteristically long time to wait for a commitment or a change of direction from a front office.
However, with the New Orleans Pelicans, it’s sort of same ‘ol, same ‘ol for Tom Benson, Mickey Loomis and the gang. It’s the third year in a row in fact.
But with this offseason comes more gravity then the ones before. This offseason is perhaps the most vital in the Pelicans twelve year history.
Why, you ask?
Anthony Davis is now tied to futures of Jrue Holiday, DeMarcus Cousins, Alvin Gentry and Dell Demps. One remains a free agent, and the other three have one year left to salvage hope. Anthony Davis and DeMarcus Cousins’ odds of staying in New Orleans depends on .
But can fans trust Dell Demps to be the man making these decisions? He pulled off a whirlwind of a trade that had executives and fans around the league aghast.
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Bringing in DeMarcus Cousins for Buddy Hield, a lottery pick and matching salaries by all probability will keep Demps safe for one more year.
And if the logic is getting Boogie to stay, shaking up Airline Drive is probably a bit redundant. That is, for a player who has experienced seven coaches in seven seasons.
Alvin Gentry has had a bad shake. There can be no argument on that. In the past year, he stumbled to 30 wins, albeit with a catastrophic 351 games of injuries. In the past season, he coached a team that saw Tim Frazier start 35 games, lost his second banana for the first 12 games of the season and saw a massive roster overhaul, with just 25 games remaining.
IThe case is there for him deserving a third go at this.
So what do you do, as President of Basketball Operations, Mickey Loomis?
You can’t upset the apple cart and risk distancing yourself from DeMarcus Cousins, a player whose happiness all but guarantees a happy Anthony Davis.
You can’t keep Dell Demps, either. Eight months from now, if the Pelicans remain out of true contention, you’re giving a career 42 percent General Manager the chance to yet again decide the fate of the New Orleans Pelicans. Reminder, it could be the most important decision in the history of the franchise.
Enter Danny Ferry.
Danny Ferry’s resume includes stops in Cleveland as Lebron’s General Manager, working as Greg Popovich’s Vice President of Basketball Operations in San Antonio, and most recently as the the Atlanta Hawks’ President and General Manager.
Ferry’s stellar work in Atlanta became overshadowed by controversy, however. During a conference call with Hawks’ staff, Ferry referred to Luol Deng using a highly offensive term. Co-Owner Michael Geardon Jr called for his resignation and Ferry took an indefinite leave of absence, before being absolved of any wrong doing.
So, does Ferry warrant a second look? He certainly has the pedigree and as a current New Orleans Pelicans’ consultant, he carries an even greater capability. He can step into Dell Demps’ shoes without upsetting the apple cart, keeping Gentry in place, and seeing to a natural shift in Airline Drive.
Dell Demps has not done a poor job in New Orleans. His greatest tragedy remains the Omer Asik contract, that while befuddling, is not a crippling one. However, after seven seasons of below mediocre basketball, it’s time for a change. This seems like the safest and most logical one to make.