Pelicans’ Omer Asik (lower back pain) won’t play at Portland

by Jim Eichenhofer

PORTLAND – Minutes before both head coaches met with the media at Moda Center, the status of two key players in Monday’s game was finalized. New Orleans center Omer Asik (lower back pain) has been placed on the inactive list for the Western Conference matchup vs. Portland. Conversely, Trail Blazers forward LaMarcus Aldridge has been activated. Portland Coach Terry Stotts said of Aldridge in pregame that “we anticipate that he will play.” Aldridge missed his team's Saturday game vs. Brooklyn due to an upper respiratory illness.

As a result of Asik being unable to play Monday, the Pelicans placed rookie Patric Young on their active list.

"He wanted to play, but we've always erred on the side of caution," said Pelicans fifth-year coach Monty Williams. Williams declined to indicate who would start in Asik's place during his pregame interviews with reporters.

Other notes:

  • There are two pieces of good news for the Pelicans in terms of gaining national exposure. Their Tuesday game in Sacramento won the “Fan Night” vote, meaning that Pelicans-Kings will be televised to a national audience on NBA TV. In addition, the Wednesday, Dec. 10 game between New Orleans and Dallas was picked up today by ESPN, bumping a Knicks-Spurs game from the network’s telecast schedule.

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