New Orleans Pelicans: The Pels added wing defenders around Zion Williamson
The Pelicans’ bench was one of the worst in the NBA last season. It was old, slow and couldn’t defend. This year the bench can be a weapon.
The Pels got the exact types of players they needed in the draft in Trey Murphy III and Herb Jones, two long defenders who can cover a lot of ground, defend multiple positions, run the floor and shoot 3-pointers.
Both Murphy III and Jones can be disruptive defenders, and when you also factor in an improved Naji Marshall, this year’s bench units could be very good defensively and offer the Pels a lot of options.
One of them is to go small with Murphy III at center, as he showed he can do against Evan Mobley and the Cleveland Cavaliers.
Instead of trying to work with a bench full of old guys who can’t defend, Zion Williamson will have young, fresh legs coming off the pine and guys who can defend their position.
With a younger, faster team being led by a coach he might actually like, Zion Williamson has the right type of team around him and they should only get better as the season goes on.