Pregame report: Pistons at Pelicans
By: Jim Eichenhofer, Pelicans.com, @Jim_Eichenhofer
Updates from the New Orleans Arena prior to Wednesday’s interconference game between Detroit and New Orleans:
• Pelicans Coach Monty Williams acknowledged that Tyreke Evans’ left ankle sprain may not keep Evans out of action for as long as was initially believed. Evans was ruled out for one to two weeks, but according to Williams, Evans “was able to do a little bit of the shootaround this morning. It’s always better to give a worst-case scenario (in a projected timetable), and then you hope (for better). You don’t know how guys will respond to treatment and days off. That was the biggest deal for us of having all of these days off, to help guys like Tyreke.”
• The Pelicans started the season 5-2 at home, but have lost three straight, dropping games to Golden State, Dallas and Oklahoma City. Like every NBA team, New Orleans views winning at home as crucial to its season. Williams: “It’s big for us. It’s always important to establish that your home is a special place. My biggest thing is giving our fans something to come out and cheer about. We haven’t done that the way I want to. I can’t wait for the days where we come in here and it’s like Portland or Utah. Utah hadn’t won a game when we got there, but it was packed. I was sitting there thinking, I wish our guys could experience what I experienced my first year coaching here (in New Orleans) when it was packed. That’s an unbelievable advantage for your team.”
• Jrue Holiday has been playing with a chipped bone in his elbow. “No one knows about it – until now,” Williams said. “He’s just a tough kid.”
• Williams said another big positive of having four days between games was getting rest for Pelicans such as Holiday, Ryan Anderson, Eric Gordon and Jason Smith, who’ve been playing heavy minutes recently.
• Williams on the Pistons’ big duo of Greg Monroe and Andre Drummond: “Drummond is so athletic and gets up and down the floor and does things that a lot of guards do. Monroe is really good at going to the basket. He’s got a great face-up jump shot.”