New Orleans fans would love to see the Pelicans’ talented, full-strength lineup together in preseason, but that won’t be the case Friday, because guard CJ McCollum has already been ruled out due to right ankle soreness. However, second-year forward Trey Murphy said after Friday’s morning shootaround that he expects to play vs. Detroit (7 p.m., Bally Sports New Orleans, WRNO 99.5 FM).
“I think I’ll be good,” Murphy said when asked if he’s ready to return after being sidelined Tuesday at Chicago with right foot soreness. “I’m not trying to be stupid (and force getting on the court), just because I want to play. Preseason games, you don’t want to risk anything.”
Trey Murphy on praise from Brandon Ingram, Kira Lewis' progress | Pelicans Training Camp 2022
Other notes from shootaround in Metairie:
Murphy (44 percent on three-pointers after the All-Star break as a rookie) is looking forward to benefiting from open looks generated by the wealth of offensive firepower New Orleans now has, with the return of Zion Williamson and a full season of McCollum. Fellow reserve Devonte’ Graham capitalized Tuesday by sinking three three-pointers and totaling 21 points in Chicago.
“There was a lot of help, let me just say that,” Murphy said of how the Bulls were forced to leave perimeter shooters in order to focus on Williamson and others. “There was a lot of help. I’m very excited to get some open shots. Even though sometimes I feel like I shoot better with a contest (by a nearby defender), but we’ll see. Hopefully it’s not too different.” …
Rookie lottery pick Dyson Daniels joined Graham in supplying major production off the bench Tuesday. The guard notched 12 fourth-quarter points and perhaps most impressively for a newcomer, made numerous defensive stops (three steals, two blocks).
“That’s what I do,” Daniels said when asked about how important defense will be to him earning minutes. “That’s what I’ve done my whole career, play defense. I’m going to bring that every practice, every game. My offense is coming along as well, but I think defense is what’s going to get me on the floor first.” …
Asked if he’s more comfortable after experiencing his debut NBA game Tuesday, Daniels responded, “I had the nerves going (in Chicago). Adrenaline was rushing, I was playing a little bit fast. To get the first game under the belt, in the second game I can play more of my game, slow down, run our team, do what I do best. I’m looking forward to showing what I can do tonight.”
PREVIOUS GAME STARTING LINEUPS
DETROIT (0-1 in preseason)
Tuesday loss at New York
Cade Cunningham, Jaden Ivey, Saddiq Bey, Bojan Bogdanovic, Isaiah Stewart
Notes: The backcourt of Cunningham (No. 1 overall pick in 2021) and Ivey (No. 5 this year) is a duo to watch during NBA preseason. … Ivey (16 points) led four Pistons in double-digit scoring at Madison Square Garden.
NEW ORLEANS (1-0 in preseason)
Tuesday win at Chicago
CJ McCollum, Herb Jones, Naji Marshall, Zion Williamson, Jonas Valanciunas
Notes: McCollum and Kira Lewis Jr. are listed as out for Friday’s game. Jones, Brandon Ingram and Murphy were deemed questionable. … Five Pelicans compiled double-digit points Tuesday, led by 21 from Devonte’ Graham.