New Orleans Pelicans: Turning defense into offense
I’ll repeat the “It’s only Summer League” disclaimer, but the Pelicans have shown exciting defensive potential in their two wins.
The Pelicans’ bench was terrible last season and often gave up leads, which is one of the reasons New Orleans lost ten games in which they blew double-digit advantages.
This year’s bench has the chance to be a weapon, as Kira Lewis Jr. looks poised for a bigger role, Murphy looks like a legit scoring threat, and both he, Jones and Naji Marshall can make the types of defensive plays that lead to points, especially with Kira pushing the pace as he does here.
Murphy used his length to get a blocked shot and the Pels were off. Once Lewis Jr. gets the ball in transition it’s over, as he blows past everyone and finds the streaking Jones for the alley-oop.
The Pelicans’ bench was a lot slower last season with guys like J.J Redick and Nicolo Melli, who were also terrible defensively.
This season the Pels are going to be more athletic, faster and use their defense to create easy buckets on the other end.