The Pelican Blog

Pregame report: Bulls at Pelicans

By: Jim Eichenhofer, Pelicans.com, @Jim_Eichenhofer

News and updates from the New Orleans Arena prior to Saturday’s interconference game between Chicago and New Orleans:

• Monty Williams on Anthony Davis: “We think he’ll play tonight, but I’ll find out more when I get in the back (to talk to Davis and the medical staff). It’s just a matter of how he feels and how we feel about him. We don’t want to put him in harm’s way.”

• Williams on how long Jason Smith (listed as out indefinitely) will likely be sidelined: “It’s going to be months. Any time you have a knee surgery, it’s easy to say weeks, but I always go long-term, just to make sure the guy has all the time he needs and is not rushing back.”

• Williams on Jrue Holiday’s status: “I don’t have anything new. He’s still talking to medical people (about his progress).”

• One of the Pelicans who has been getting more minutes lately as a result of injuries has been rookie center Jeff Withey. Williams said New Orleans (19-26) was not counting on having to rely on the 7-footer this season, but he has been pushed into the rotation under the circumstances. “We like his activity,” Williams said. “He’s really good at blocking and distracting shots. He’s really put a lot of work into his game. Offensively, he can really finish around the basket, even though he’s had a tough time the last two or three games. He puts a lot of work into his game.”

• Williams on the reasons behind the Bulls’ defensive success: “They have defensive players. (Joakim) Noah might be one of the best defensive bigs in the league. He doesn’t get enough credit for that. (Jimmy) Butler is really good guarding wings. They have veteran guys who understand possessions and slow the game down.”