New Orleans Pelicans: Season predictions for the guards

CJ McCollum #3 of the New Orleans Pelicans . (Photo by Michael Owens/Getty Images)
CJ McCollum #3 of the New Orleans Pelicans . (Photo by Michael Owens/Getty Images) /
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New Orleans Pelicans, Jose Alvarado, Devonte Graham
Devonte’ Graham #4 of the New Orleans Pelicans embraces Jose Alvarado (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images) /

Devonte’ Graham: Bench Heat

Devonte Graham’s first season in the Big Easy was largely underwhelming. The Jayhawk averaged 11.9 points on 36.3 percent shooting from the field and 34.1 percent shooting from deep while adding 4.2 assists per game.

With Zion Williamson back and attracting attention, expect Graham to return to his sharpshooting form this season, serving as a sparkplug off the bench to collect points in short bursts. He’s going to come off the bench firing and win a few games for New Orleans with his shooting.

If Graham proves to be more consistent in his shooting and playmaking abilities, don’t be surprised to see him inserted into some of coach Green’s starting line-up formations depending on the matchup or if there are any injuries.

Graham will play the same or even less, but be more efficient in his role, shooting closer to 38-40 percent from long range.

Jose Alvarado: A Pest

In Alvarado’s first season with the Pelicans, he demonstrated the ability to play the game with an unmatched intensity and became a true pest that can change the dynamic of a game off the bench. Other than the steals, his numbers don’t stand out, but he was the heart and soul of the bench and will be even more so this season.

In 54 games played, Alvarado averaged a modest 6.1 points and 2.8 assists, and 1.3 steals per game in just over 15 minutes. Expect those numbers to go up, as Alvarado is going to play more this season and has shown increased aggressiveness on offense, averaging over 12 per game in the offseason.

The defense is always going to be there but this season Alvarado will be a bigger offensive threat.