The Pelicans sign the most intriguing two-way prospect

New Orleans Pelicans forward John Butler Credit: Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports
New Orleans Pelicans forward John Butler Credit: Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports /

One of the biggest questions hanging over an otherwise quiet offseason for the New Orleans Pelicans was who was going to end up with the two-way contracts.

Two-way deals can be converted or scrapped with little penalty, so it’s possible that New Orleans will change their mind after seeing some of these guys perform in preseason.

But the Pelicans announced yesterday that they are taking a flyer on one of the most intriguing prospects of the group of guys fighting for spots.

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The New Orleans Pelicans have converted rookie John Butler to a two-way contract, according to Michael Scotto of HoopsHype.

The undrafted rookie from Florida State played on New Orleans’ summer league team where he displayed a great deal of potential. In the team’s final game Butler scored 25 points on a perfect 9/9 from the field, turning some heads in the Pels’ front office in the process.

Butler’s height at 7-foot-2 matched with the ability to shoot the ball makes him a high-ceiling prospect, but one that needs a lot of work.

It is assumed that while in the G-League, the Pelicans will look to develop Butler with hopes he could potentially carve out a role with New Orleans in the future.

On paper, he’s the perfect type of big man to have next to Zion Williamson, as he can block shots and spread the floor, but he needs to put on strength to be able to compete against NBA centers.

He may end up being more of a power forward prospect in a similar mold to Jaxson Hayes, as Butler has shown an offensive bag that is impressive when you consider his size. Some of the other prospects are a bit more game-ready than Butler, but he has upside that is worth a two-way deal for the Pelicans, who are hoping that they have found another undrafted gem in Butler.

We may get our first look at him late in the game tonight against the Chicago Bulls, but Butler will start the regular season in the G-League and hope to work his way onto the roster.

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