Davis to stay in Pelicans’ lineup — for now

METAIRIE, La. (AP)  — When Pelicans completed apply on Thursday, Anthony Davis went into coach Alvin Gentry’s workplace, adopted later by interim common supervisor Danny Ferry.

As they spoke, privateness shades on home windows that in any other case provide a view of apply courts had been pulled down.

After the assembly, Gentry stated Davis was slated to begin at Indiana on Friday evening. However past that, the Pelicans weren’t able to shed a lot gentle on how they plan to deal with having their disaffected six-time All-Star on the roster for the ultimate seven weeks of the common season.

“He is taking part in tomorrow,” Gentry stated repeatedly in response to various questions on Davis’ standing with the membership. “He is taking part in the sport tomorrow. Let’s get to that one after which we will fear about every part else.”

On Saturday evening, the Pelicans are scheduled to host LeBron James and the Los Angeles Lakers.

Davis, who’s represented by the identical agent as James, has requested a commerce. The Lakers tried to amass Davis earlier than this season’s Feb. 7 commerce deadline, however the Pelicans declined to maneuver him, opting as a substitute to attend till the offseason, when extra shall be recognized about draft slots and extra groups could make concrete presents.

NBA guidelines forbid golf equipment from resting wholesome gamers in methods deemed detrimental to the league, notably for nationally televised video games and street video games. So the Pelicans are attempting to find out the easiest way to adjust to these guidelines throughout their remaining 23 video games whereas additionally planning for a future with out Davis.

Gentry characterised the continued saga the strangest factor he has been part of “in my life.”

The sport at Indiana would be the Pelicans’ first since they fired common supervisor Dell Demps on Friday and appointed Ferry as his interim substitute. Gentry, who was employed by Demps to teach a crew constructed round Davis, stated he’d wish to proceed teaching New Orleans beneath the following common supervisor, no matter his imaginative and prescient for the roster could also be.

“I really like New Orleans. I like being right here,” Gentry stated. “I really like my job and I would wish to be right here a very long time.”

Gentry additionally stated he retains “a ton of respect” for Demps.

“I would not be right here with out Dell,” Gentry stated. “We labored properly collectively and I respect what he did for me.”

Based mostly on the philosophy expressed up to now by Pelicans higher administration, the following common supervisor can have the liberty to choose a brand new coach.

Gentry sounded resigned to the chance that his tenure right here won’t final past this season. The Pelicans are rising from the All-Star break with a 26-33 document, six video games out of the Western Convention’s eighth and remaining playoff spot. That is Gentry’s fourth season, and New Orleans’ solely playoff berth since he was employed got here final season.

“What I am going to focus on is 23 extra video games and to have them attempt to play at an actual excessive degree and compete at an actual excessive degree, discover out slightly bit about our youthful guys,” Gentry stated. “As a coach, you have to attempt to get your guys to see if they will give attention to the duty at hand, and that is taking part in basketball video games – and you already know it isn’t straightforward to do with a number of the issues that is occurring proper now. That is asking quite a bit out of anyone with the best way issues have been. However that is what we’re right here to do.”

Pelicans middle Jahlil Okafor, who was the one participant to talk with reporters after apply, insisted that he and his teammates weren’t bothered by Davis’ continued presence within the lineup.

“It is regular for us. That is a credit score to AD. He is such an excellent individual – he is such an excellent teammate – that we love having him round,” Okafor stated. “I believe everyone right here selfishly would love him to remain. However on the finish of the day, we wish him to be blissful and we wish what’s greatest for him. Nevertheless it is not awkward for us in any respect.”

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