The latest news around the New Orleans Pelicans organization is that the team has agreed to terms with Luke Babbitt. Babbitt will hopefully help the Pelicans claw back into playoff contention. New Orleans is now only 6 games out of eighth place with that big win over the Chicago Bulls on Saturday February 1, 2014.
Babbitt was about to start his college career at Ohio State, but he took back his verbal commit and decided to play his college ball at the University of Nevada. One of his career moments was when he was named the 2010 WAC Player of the Year. The Minnesota Timberwolves at pick 16 took Babbitt in the 2010 NBA Draft. After that he was traded to the Portland Trail Blazers where he spent most of his young career.
Babbitt has played in 126 NBA games and averaged 3.8 points per game and 2.1 rebounds per game. Babbitt split time with the Trail Blazers and the Stampede, a D-League team out of Idaho. This season he has been playing over in Russia for Nizhny Novgorod and averaged 13.3 points per game, 3.7 rebounds a game and shot 57% from the three-point line, but remember that the three-point line in the international league is shorter than the NBA three-point line.
Babbitt and the Pelicans agreed on a two-year deal through next season.
Babbitt is a forward and he is only 24 years old. The Pelicans have picked up the intensity since snapping their 8-game losing streak and Babbitt will give the Pelicans another scoring option. With injuries to Jrue Holiday and Ryan Anderson, Babbitt will be looking to contribute a lot on the offensive side of the ball.
No information on when Babbitt will first suit up for the Pelicans, but when he does it will be interesting to see how many minutes he gets. Hopefully the Pelicans won’t waive Babbitt like they did to Tyshawn Taylor.
The Pelicans have started February off on the right foot with an 88-79 win against the Chicago Bulls last night. When Anthony Davis plays the Pelicans win that is the bottom line. Davis finished with 24 points, 8 rebounds, 3 assists, 3 steals and an impressive 6 blocks. The last three games that Davis has played in he’s averaging 7 blocks a game. The only other player in double-digit scoring that night was Tyreke Evans with 11 points.
The Pelicans didn’t get outscored in the third quarter and if they continue to play well right out of halftime the team could easily make the playoffs.
Davis is doing everything he can to get the Pelicans into the playoffs. Every time he steps out on the court, you can just tell that he wants to play the whole game without sitting on the bench. He is averaging a double-double on the year and is the league leader in blocks. And how did he not receive a spot on the Western Conference All-Star team? Better luck next year Mr. Davis.
This week the Pelicans went 2-1 and lost the game that Davis didn’t play in. Easily New Orleans could’ve won all three of their games this week.
I hope that the Pelicans coaching staff plays Babbitt and lets him shoot the rock. This team is struggling with scoring options other than Davis and bringing Babbitt to New Orleans could solve that scoring problem to an extent.