Pelicans: J.J. Redick comments prove New Orleans still has work to do in pleasing stars

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(Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images) /
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Lonzo Ball of the New Orleans Pelicans
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New Orleans Pelicans: Keep the young core at all costs

Given that NBA players across the board already don’t exactly salivate at the opportunity of playing at the Smoothie King Center, this adds even more pressure on the New Orleans Pelicans to preserve their young core.

Yes, that means Williamson, but barring bizarre circumstances, he is locked down for the foreseeable future. Right now, the Pelicans need to keep Lonzo Ball and Josh Hart. Both will be restricted free agents this summer and, simply put, New Orleans is unlikely to find a suitable replacement for either.

Keep in mind that it is the Pelicans who control both’s future. As long as they match any offers from other teams, both former Lakers will stay in New Orleans for the long run. At 23-years-old and 26-years-old, respectively, Ball and Hart provide value immediately and in the future.

That’s why any whispers about trading Brandon Ingram should be immediately abolished. I’m sure the Pels could get a bucketload of assets in exchange for the one-time all-star, but how many of those assets will actually do what Ingram does once he steps on the floor?

The answer is probably none. Even if a trade materialized into the Pels getting another number one draft pick in the future, the likelihood of said prospect becoming better than Ingram is slim. Ingram has already achieved more in the NBA than a lot of top picks ever do.

While Redick is not an important loss for the Pelicans, the comments he made are a reflection of the work that New Orleans needs to do to be considered a premier destination. This summer would be a good time to start.

Next. The next 4 games are critical for the Pels. dark