Pelicans guard JJ Redick: 'I'm a lover of New Orleans'

Newly acquired Pelican JJ Redick spoke with the media Tuesday, July 23, discussing among other topics, his love for the city of New Orleans and his decision to join the organization.

“In terms of the city of New Orleans, I talked about this on my podcast last week, but I'm a lover of New Orleans,” Redick said. “New Orleans has an incredible culture. Everybody brings up food first, but I realized there's a lot more to that in terms of music and art and people and history. Also, I did mention that, you know, of all sort of the NFL teams, the Saints have one of the most rabid fan bases and we're hoping to bring that same level of intensity to the Pelicans.”

As for his commitment to join the Pelicans, Redick identified the moves that the organization has made since the end of last season played a key role in his decision.

“My perception of the organization changed back in April when they hired Griff (David Griffin) and later brought on Trajan (Langdon),” he said. “I saw sort of the way Griff was maneuvering, and then having certain conversations during free agency, realizing just how much good he has done and how committed Mrs. Benson is to the team. I just felt like everything was headed in the right direction and it wasn't that I had a negative preconceived notion of the organization or anything like that. It was just more neutral and it became much more positive in the last three months.”

When asked how he thinks his game will mesh with fellow guard Jrue Holiday, Redick noted that Holiday’s game has the potential to make him a better player.

“Well, to be honest with you Jrue is somebody that I've always wanted to play with,” Redick said. “His ability on both ends of the floor really would make me a better player. When David (Griffin) kind of came out publicly around the draft lottery and kind of indicated that Jrue would be sticking around, that was exciting to me.”

The Pelicans roster features five former Duke Blue Devils, with Redick having the most NBA experience among the group. When asked about the unique situation with all the Duke players on the team as well as a Duke grad as general manager (Langdon), Redick noted the importance of that Duke brotherhood.

“Yeah, I think if you give Trajan five or six more good offseasons we'll have 12 to 15 Duke guys on the team,” Redick joked. “No, it is really unique, and ‘we’ meaning Duke players and Duke coaches and just to me, we always talk about the Brotherhood and it's very real. We always look out for each other.”

Redick comes in with 12 years of NBA experience and likes the idea of serving as a mentor for the young core of this team.

“I feel like I've been mentoring young guys for a long time,” he said. “It hasn't been something that just happened in Philly. It's something that I really enjoy doing. The first opportunity that I really had to do that was my last year in Orlando. E’Twaun Moore was on that team. Young player in the league he was one of the guys that I tried to help.”

Redick comes to New Orleans after spending the previous two seasons in Philadelphia. He averaged a career-high 18.1 points in 76 games (63 starts) for the Philadelphia 76ers last season. The 6-foot-4 guard has made at least 44 percent of his field-goal attempts in each of the last six seasons. Redick has not missed the playoffs during his NBA career.