The New Orleans Pelicans won their first game of the Summer League, defeating the Chicago Bulls in a game that was closer than the 94-77 score would indicate.
The Pels used a late 23-6 run to put the Bulls away, which was nice to see even though it is ultimately a meaningless Summer League game.
The Bulls and Pelicans will likely be rivals this season after the Lonzo Ball saga, which is still ongoing due to a tampering investigation that could cost the Pels a first-round draft pick.
The two teams are also embroiled in a negotiation for restricted free agent Lauri Markkanen, who probably should have been included in the Lonzo Ball trade to begin with, as the Pels got next to nothing for helping the Bulls by orchestrating a sign-and-trade.
This could spill over into the regular season, but for now, this was just a Summer League game, so let’s not get too worked up.
Here are some way-too-early takeaways from the Pelicans’ win over the Bulls.
New Orleans Pelicans: Trey Murphy III is going to be a steal
It’s hard to believe that a 6-foot-9 forward who shoots 43 percent from 3-point range dropped to the 17th pick, but it was good luck for the Pelicans.
I thought Trey Murphy III was going to thrive in New Orleans, but after last night, he looks like the steal of the draft.
I understand that this was just Summer League and eventually Murphy III is going to face better opponents, but he is also going to have Zion Williamson and Brandon Ingram as teammates, which is going to lead to a lot of open shots.
Murphy III showed that he can hit them, knocking down six of nine 3-pointers on his way to 26 points to lead both teams.
Murphy III looked smooth, athletic and ready to join the Pelicans’ rotation right now, which is pretty exciting.