3 takeaways from Pelicans blowout win over the Clippers

New Orleans Pelicans center Jonas Valanciunas Credit: Stephen Lew-USA TODAY Sports
New Orleans Pelicans center Jonas Valanciunas Credit: Stephen Lew-USA TODAY Sports /
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New Orleans Pelicans, Jonas Valanciunas
Jonas Valanciunas #17 of the New Orleans Pelicans ](Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images) /

The New Orleans Pelicans played their best game of the season against the Los Angeles Clippers, winning 123-104 behind some red-hot shooting.

Jonas Valanciunas led the way going 7-of-8 from long-range with a flurry of shots in the 1st half. The Pelicans’ bench was going crazy and the Pels were rolling, going up 18 early.

Just about everyone got in on the hot shooting and the Pelicans finished hitting 40 percent of their 3-point shots as a team.

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It was a thing of beauty on both ends, as the Pelicans’ defense forced the Clippers into a lot of isolation basketball and tough shots that led to fast breaks for New Orleans.

Here are 3 takeaways from the Pels win over the Clippers.

The New Orleans Pelicans are starting to roll

Don’t look now but the Pelicans are 5-5 over their last 10 games and just took 2-of-3 on a tough road trip out West, beating Utah and LA.

The Pelicans are just five games back of the play-in and after back-to-back games with Dallas, have a lighter schedule that will hopefully lead to a few wins, especially if Zion Williamson is back by then.

The teams directly ahead of them in the standings aren’t playing particularly well, so if the Pelicans can string together a few weeks of quality play, they could be right back in this thing in time to make a run at the playoffs.

The Pels seem to be figuring some things out on offense and Willie Green has tightened his rotations. Once Zion gets back the Pels can go with Willie Hernangomez, Josh Hart, Kira Lewis Jr. and Nickeil Alexander-Walker for most of their bench minutes and all of them have been contributing.

The starters are playing well and the bench players are figuring out their roles, so the Pelicans could be poised to go on a run once they are finally at full strength.