Pregame report: 76ers at Pelicans
By: Jim Eichenhofer, Pelicans.com, @Jim_Eichenhofer
Updates from the New Orleans Arena prior to Saturday’s interconference game between Philadelphia and New Orleans:
• Though Ryan Anderson vowed at shootaround to play tonight, Monty Williams characterized Anderson’s status as a “game-time decision.” Williams: “It looks like he’s going to play, but it’s still not 100 percent (that he will).” If Anderson plays, Williams said he will check in regularly with the power forward in terms of his conditioning and how many minutes Anderson can handle. Anderson last played Oct. 25 in a preseason game at Orlando.
• Williams said he is pleased that New Orleans has reduced its turnovers since preseason, when it became a problem. Williams wants point guard Jrue Holiday to limit his individual turnovers per game to two to three. Holiday is averaging 6.8 assists and 4.1 turnovers.
• Greg Stiemsma’s MCL knee injury will not require surgery, according to Williams, who said he sustained the same injury two years ago while coaching. Stiemsma is out six to eight weeks. Williams on the team’s frontcourt rotation: “We didn’t know at the time (Stiemsma would be injured), but that’s one of the reasons we brought in Lou Amundson. Lou certainly was a timely bring-in, because he has the experience and he’s been with us before. In a perfect world, I’d just like to shuffle Jason (Smith), Anthony (Davis) and Ryan (Anderson at the big positions). Lou can certainly help us in that area, because he has the toughness to play center. There’s nobody out there that has NBA experience that could play against guys like Roy Hibbert, Andrew Bynum and those guys, so Lou became a valuable option.”
• Speaking of frontcourt depth, rookie center Jeff Withey played in the meat of a close game for the first time Wednesday, logging nine minutes at Utah.
• Williams noted that he wants Tyreke Evans to make quicker decisions with the ball, instead of holding it and letting the opponent's defense load up to stop his drives to the basket.