Josh Hart Pelicans Season in Review

Josh Hart Pelicans Season in Review | 2019-20

by Jim Eichenhofer
  • Age 25
  • Experience three seasons (one with Pelicans)
  • Games Played/Games Started 65/16

Josh Hart was a late-first round draft choice in 2017, but when he was included in New Orleans’ blockbuster trade with the Los Angeles Lakers last summer, Hart was the only player in the transaction who had not been a No. 1 or No. 2 overall pick. As such, the rugged wing was a mostly unfamiliar face to his new fan base in the Crescent City. That quickly changed. Whether through his activity on social media, or his intensity on the court, Hart quickly became a fan favorite, greatly appreciated for his hard-nosed approach. And not just by Pelicans aficionados.

“Josh Hart is absolutely our junkyard dog right now,” Executive VP of Basketball Operations David Griffin said during the NBA’s shutdown. “He's the guy setting the tone to an enormous degree by giving himself up on the defensive end.”

When asked to evaluate NOLA’s season overall, Hart used similarly combative terms, describing one of the biggest positives as, “The fight we probably have. Just the resilience to continue to compete. To get better. When we started 6-22, the chance of making the playoffs is slim. For us to continue to fight and get better and put us in a position to have a chance to make the playoffs, speaks a lot about the character of the team and organization, and where we want to go moving forward.”

    Josh Hart Per-Game Stats from 2019-20 NBA Season

  • Minutes 27.0
  • Field Goal % 42.3
  • Three Point % 34.2
  • Free Throw % 73.9
  • Points 10.1
  • Rebounds 6.5
  • Assists 1.7
  • Steals 1.0
  • Blocks 0.4

At just 6-foot-5, Hart was still the team’s second-leading rebounder (6.5 rpg) and was often a “glue guy” for the Pelicans, filling a multitude of different roles. That proved invaluable on a squad forced to adjust after several key injuries.

“We did the best we could with some of the misfortune, certain injuries and some of the things we sustained during the season,” Hart said. “Whenever someone went down, there was a next-man mentality.”

Josh Hart | By The Numbers

  • 121

    Three-pointers made by Hart this season, a career high. Hart was one of five Pelicans who drilled over 100 treys. Despite the success, he anticipated potentially tweaking his form this offseason, saying he wants to “continue to improve my shooting. Change a little in terms of technique and mechanics. That’s something I’ve wanted to do.”

  • 13

    Games of double-digit rebounds for Hart, who also notched 14 games of grabbing multiple offensive rebounds. He finished with 10 double-doubles, wrapping up the team’s 72-game campaign with 23 points and 14 boards vs. the Magic.

  • 55

    Consecutive games Hart played to close the season. From a Nov. 27 home matchup vs. the Lakers through the eighth and final seeding game in Orlando, Hart was in uniform every night. He was one of the few Pelicans who actually shot better in the bubble than prior to it, going 25/51 from the field (49 percent) at Disney.

Josh Hart | Most Notable Games from 2019-20 NBA Season

  • #1, March 6, New Orleans 110, Miami 104

    In the Pelicans’ penultimate game before a pandemic suspended the season, Hart registered 19 points and 12 rebounds on ESPN’s airwaves, a key contribution off the bench. He drained three three-pointers and shot 4/4 on free throws.

  • #2, Dec. 25, New Orleans 112, Denver 100

    A very encouraging 3-1 road trip for the Pelicans was capped by this Christmas win at Pepsi Center. Hart went for 16 points and nine rebounds, highlighted by 4/5 three-point shooting. As a team, New Orleans shot 18/43 from beyond the arc.

  • #3, Feb. 21, New Orleans 128, Portland 115

    Hart helped spearhead the Pelicans to a positive start to their post-All-Star break portion of the schedule, posting a double-double with 13 points and 13 rebounds. He only needed five shots from the field to score those 13 points, including sinking all three of his trey attempts. The Pelicans were plus-15 with him on the floor.

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