New Orleans Pelicans depth chart after free agency

Herbert Jones, New Orleans Pelicans. (Photo by Jonathan Bachman/Getty Images)
Herbert Jones, New Orleans Pelicans. (Photo by Jonathan Bachman/Getty Images) /

While the 2023 Free Agency isn’t officially over yet, and the New Orleans Pelicans do still have some spots left to fill, the major portion of their rotation heading into next season is pretty much set in stone.

Despite early on this off-season looking like it had the potential to be the conduit for sweeping changes, the Pelicans’ roster has remained largely unchanged for the most part. To recap, the major transactions that have taken place are the drafting of Jordan Hawkins, the extension of Herbert Jones, and the signing of Cody Zeller. The major departures are the losses of Josh Richardson (you will be missed, my friend), Jaxson Hayes, and Willy Hernangomez.

With that all squared away, let’s take a look at what the Pelicans’ projected depth chart for the 2023-24 season looks like at this moment in time. Keep in mind that all these positions are based on what the player is listed as on their Basketball Reference profile.

New Orleans Pelicans 2023-24 Projected Depth Chart* 

Point Guards: Dyson Daniels, Jose Alvarado, Kira Lewis Jr.

Shooting Guards: CJ McCollum, Jordan Hawkins

Small Forwards: Brandon Ingram, Trey Murphy III, Naji Marshall

Power Forwards: Zion Williamson, Herbert Jones, E.J. Liddell

Centers: Jonas Valanciunas, Larry Nance Jr., Cody Zeller

*Positions provided by Basketball Reference 

First things first, we know that terms like “Point Guard” and “Shooting Guard” are pretty antiquated in today’s positionless game. But we decided to sort them in this manner anyways for the sake of simplicity.

With that said, from looking at this chart, the Pelicans’ affinity toward prioritizing length and size has left them bereft when it comes to backcourt depth. That’s why their starting lineup next season probably won’t feature a true point guard. And depending on what they decide to do with CJ McCollum (he may be taking a role off the bench), they may not have a true shooting guard in their starting five either.

Another thing one notices from looking at their roster in this fashion is that they actually have a lot of depth at the center position. The question now becomes: can any of their bigs help them in the area they need help at the most (rim protection)?

Like we said, there are still a few more spots to fill on the roster. Depending on how things go in training camp, guys like Dereon Seabron and Landers Nolley II may be joining the team full-time too. Both of whom could serve to help bolster the team’s backcourt depth.

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