The New Orleans Pelicans season tips off tomorrow night against the Memphis Grizzlies. Here at Locked on Pelicans we’ll be previewing (and talking about) the season this whole week. But before we look forward, let’s take a look back and recap the Pelicans offseason.
Grade, on whatever scale you’d like, the Pelicans offseason
Jake- B-. The Pelicans overpaid Jrue Holiday, but their hands were tied and they pretty much had no choice. After that it was about getting quality players on cheap deals to avoid hard capping the team. Given that handicap they did a pretty good job in signing guys like Ian Clark and Rajon Rondo–both of whom solidify their guard rotation and allow Holiday to play off ball more. None of these players are difference makers, which holds the grade back, but overall it’s hard to be upset with what the team did.
Alex – B-. There wasn’t much the Pelicans do but to sign Jrue Holiday. After that, it was all about filling the team with people to compliment Boogie and Davis. I don’t think the Pels went after enough shooting, but they should be stout defensively. Bringing in the Grindfather Tony Allen is always a good call and was crucial for defense after Solomon Hill got injured. And I’m excited to see Rondo. He’s one of the most intelligent players there is, and if he makes Boogie happy, that should make the Pelicans happy too.
Fernando- B. With the last couple off season mistakes and giving significant money to two bigs that probably won’t even get minutes, I think the pels did pretty good. One year deals to guys like, Clark, rondo, and Allen gives this team some needed veteran experience but doesn’t cripple them at all long term. If everything works out you can more than likely resign those guys.
Jermaine – B+. Re-signing Holiday was our main priority. The additions of perimeter defenders in Rondo and Allen also free up Holiday to move without the ball. However, we’re thin in the front court with the injury to Hill and the awful news about Omer Asik’s illness. Hopefully Diallo builds on the flashes he showed in limited time last season.
Raby – I give it a solid B. As Dell Demps has always done, he shined brightly with tertiary moves. Bringing back Dante Cunningham was a great and necessary move, as was bringing in veterans Tony Allen and Rajon Rondo. I don’t think I’ll ever be a fan of the Jrue Holiday signing from a pure money standpoint, but the deal was necessary to put a trustworthy third option that the players love. Spacing may be an issue, but the Pelicans addressed toughness and intelligence with their signings this year, so it should balance out.
Rory – B. I thought about going lower due to the anxiety of starting yet another season missing multiple starters to injury, but this offseason went about as well as one could reasonably expect. Nearly every goal was met: retaining Holiday, adding playoff experience and high basketball IQ (Rondo), bringing in defensive help (Allen and Cunningham), and some shooting (Clark). I say “some” shooting with generosity, however. I think Clark will be better than most think, but he alone is not enough to space the floor. However, he is certainly a step in the right direction.
Luis – 8/10. Look, without a doubt, no matter how you feel about him, the Pellies had to re-sign Jrue Holiday. It was where they had put themselves and I don’t really think that you can deduct for the re-signing. After that, I think the help Dell brought in on minimum contracts can potentially be really solid. Rajon Rondo, Tony Allen, Ian Clark all have their negatives, but they all bring in something the team needed. Bringing back Dante Cunningham was necessary after the Solo injury. A trade probably could have put it over the top for me, but hard to fault the team if we do not know what was available.