The New Orleans Pelicans are going to try to start their season a perfect 3-0 tonight as they face off against the Golden State Warriors (2-1) in what will be their second home game of the season.
Despite missing some key pieces, their first home game of the season on Saturday was a success, as they defeated the New York Knicks (1-2) 96-87. With all this in mind, who will the Pelicans have available to them tonight?
For the third straight game in a row, the Pelicans will have all of their starters healthy and available for Monday’s game. That means that Brandon Ingram, CJ McCollum, Jonas Valanciunas, Herbert Jones, and, yes, Zion Williamson, will all be good to go against the Warriors.
On Saturday, only one of the five starters (Ingram) logged over 30 minutes in the game. But that seemed to be more based on the flow of the evening rather than the result of any sort of minutes restriction.
Speaking of minutes, Larry Nance Jr. played 16 minutes on Saturday. That is after not playing the entire preseason with an ankle injury and only playing 15 minutes in the season opener. Last season, Nance played 21.2 MPG, so his lower minutes may be the result of the Pelicans exercising some caution while they work him back in.
Trey Murphy III (meniscus) and Jose Alvarado (ankle) continue to be out. Murphy is likely to miss the first month or so of the season as he recovers from offseason left meniscus surgery. Meanwhile, Jose Alvarado should be getting re-evaluated at some point next week.
Naji Marshall was supposed to be getting re-evaluated right around now. However, based on ESPN’s injury report (updated on October 29th), he has already been ruled out for Monday’s game. The good news is that he has been cleared to begin his rehab process now. So, to recap, the Pelicans will be missing Murphy, Alvarado, and Marshall.
As for the Warriors, based on their injury report on ESPN, they will be completely healthy for Monday’s game. And on top of that, it seems like they won’t be resting any of their marquee guys.
As NOLA.com’s Christian Clark noted, this marks the first time Stephen Curry has played in the Smoothie King Center since May 4, 2021.