The New Orleans Pelicans need more shooters around Zion Williamson and there may be some NBA free agents that can help.
The Pelicans were 25th in the NBA in 3-point percentage this season as a team, and their offense became painfully predictable with two guys doing most of the scoring.
Lonzo Ball provided some of the shooting the Pelicans need but he is a restricted free agent who could end up as part of a sign-and-trade with a team like the Bulls or just sign with someone else outright if the Pelicans don’t match their offer.
Regardless of what happens with Lonzo, the Pelicans need more shooters to punish teams for collapsing their defense to try and stop Zion.
There are several free agent shooters who could be available but the New Orleans Pelicans can’t make the same mistake they made with J.J. Redick and overpay for a one-dimensional player in decline.
Here are three free agents and whether the Pelicans should pass or pursue them in the offseason.
New Orleans Pelicans: NBA free agent Norman Powell
I wrote about Normal Powell in more detail here.
He is the most complicated of the three because he has to decline his player option, which he almost definitely will, and he’ll likely be getting a big pay raise from the $11 million he is owed next season.
Getting Powell would largely depend on what the Pelicans do with their own free agents, particularly Lonzo and Josh Hart, who are both looking to make more money and may want a fresh start on another team.
If the Pelicans were to move on from Ball and Hart, Powell makes a lot of sense, as he is in his prime, can defend a couple of spots on the perimeter and is a lights-out 3-point shooter.
He’d be an upgrade who could move the needle for the New Orleans Pelicans.