A Summer League disaster for the Pelicans’ rookie class

New Orleans Pelicans forward E.J. Liddell Credit: Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports
New Orleans Pelicans forward E.J. Liddell Credit: Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports /

The New Orleans Pelicans got their first win of the Summer League yesterday, a blowout of the Atlanta Hawks that was fueled by a monster performance from Trey Murphy III.

The Pelicans shared the ball much better than the first Summer League flop, in which they only had 10 assists as a team. That number nearly doubled in the second game, and the Pels were much-more efficient from the 3-point line, hitting 44 percent as a team.

The Pels may have bounced back as a team, but it has been nothing short of a disaster for rookies Dyson Daniels and EJ Liddell.

Daniels went out with what is being called a mild ankle sprain in game one after crashing to the floor on an out-of-control drive to the rim. He played just eight minutes and will likely miss the rest of the NBA Summer League.

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The bad luck for the rookies continued last night, and things looked a little more serious for Liddell.

New Orleans Pelicans Summer League: EJ Liddell leaves game with knee injury

Rookie EJ Liddel, who many believe will be one of the steals of the draft after falling to the Pelicans in the second round, had to leave the game with the help of two teammates after a second knee injury of the game sent him to the floor.

Liddell had already been down in the 1st quarter with what looked like a twisted knee, but this one sent him to the locker room for good.

I am no doctor, so wouldn’t want to speculate, but that didn’t look great, especially after the defender, who must have thought he was in the NFL instead of the NBA, shoved Liddell back onto his own leg like an offensive lineman finishing a block.

There hasn’t been any indication of the severity of the injury and we are hoping it is minor and not any major problem with an ACL that would keep Liddell out for an extended period.

Injuries are part of the game, and the Pelicans at least have the depth to handle it this season, but this is not the start that either of the New Orleans’ rookies was looking for.

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