Pelicans shootaround update presented by HUB International: Anthony Davis says he will play against Thunder

by Jim Eichenhofer

Anthony Davis and the Pelicans received a scare Friday when the four-time All-Star was accidentally head-butted by Nuggets center Nikola Jokic – causing Davis to exit the game – but it appears the injury will not force the four-time All-Star to miss any additional time.

After Monday’s morning shootaround in the Ochsner Sports Performance Center, Davis indicated that he is fine and will play tonight vs. Oklahoma City (7-8). The 24-year-old, who is listed as probable on the official injury report, was polite but succinct while addressing the media, responding “yes” when asked if he’ll be OK to suit up against the Thunder. Asked if he was 100 percent, Davis responded, “I’m good.”

Other notes from shootaround:

After playing five, 14 and 25 minutes respectively in his first three appearances of the regular season, Pelicans point guard Rajon Rondo said his minute restriction in Monday’s game will be “maybe 24 to 26.” On how he felt Friday in Denver while playing a bigger chunk of minutes, Rondo said, “I felt fine. My groin is getting better and better each day. That’s all I can ask for. I’ll continue to work on my lateral movement, and continue to get stronger in my lower body.” …

New Orleans (8-8) is coming off a very poor defensive performance at Denver, making improvement at that end of the floor imperative against an Oklahoma City squad that boasts three perennial All-Stars.

“Just defend the three (point shot),” Davis said of one key. “They are a great three-point shooting team. Russell (Westbrook), guys coming off the bench, Carmelo (Anthony), Paul George, they all can shoot the three. (OKC’s star trio) are all isolation players, so we’ve got to guard the ball tonight.” …

Rondo on New Orleans facing OKC and its top three players: “It’s going to take a team effort. Those guys are really good and get paid a lot of money. It’s going to be a collective team effort to get stops.”