Friday, December 23, 2016
By Dave Washington, Jr.
Photo Cred: Tom Withers – Associated Press –
New Orleans, LA – The holiday season in many cases brings visions of sugar plums to most adults and children alike who had grandmothers that could really explain what sugar plums were all about. This holiday season the Pelicans and Heat had a wish list for Santa a mile long. Those visions are only as far removed as an NBA Championship won by the LeBron James led Cleveland Cavaliers of the 2015-2016 season. Where do you start, well the Heat could ask Santa for a bigger bank roll to get LaBron back, but maybe not “because there is no place like home”. The Pelicans, specifically, Anthony Davis would petition Santa for a pair of 6/8 to 6/10 sharp shooting rack robbers (rebounders), dropping plus 20 points per game would help, like duhhhh.
Tonights tennis match with six lead changes in each of the first three quarters and nine in the fourth would lead the average Joe to believe this was astonishing. Not so my Dear Watson, in fact that honor goes to the Clippers and Trail Blazers, they set the current record with 40 lead changes on February 13, 2014. However, other personal best were on display, i.e…, Anthony Davis grabbed a career high 22 rebounds which brings light to the glaring white elephant in the room. AD’s 22 rack snatches compared to the rest of the starting four with 17, keeps AD crying “HELP”. For you stat freaks that’s AD killing with 77% of all rebounds for the stating five. Granted when you factor in the bench strength on the boards with 13, total boards 52, now AD tips the scales with 42% of the boards for the Pelicans. Have I made my case or better yet has AD made his case to Santa. (Back to the first paragraph last sentence)
The home stretch to the All-Star weekend break finds these two teams desperately needing wins, the Pelicans (10-21) and the Heat (10-20), going into tonight’s game. The Pelicans have a five game home stand after dropping the first of the five to the Oklahoma City Thunder 121-110. This see-saw battle tonight, like the OKC game saw the Pelicans lose the rack/match (rebounds) 49-34. The continued disparity in rebounds were evident in tonights game but this time with three players in double figures, AD chipped in his usual high with 28, Jrue Holiday, 22 and Langston Galloway dropped 11. This was enough for the Pelicans to rebound (excuse the pun) from a 68-64 third quarter deficit to ink out a fourth quarter victory 91-87. A 27 point run in the fourth quarter was the difference in this much needed victory. The Pelicans Big Three for the night showed up in the fourth, Langston Galloway with eight (11 total), Jrue Holiday with seven (22 total and AD with 4 (28 total).
Two down three to go at home, Mavericks (9-21) Monday 12/26/2016, Clippers (22-9) Wednesday 12/28/2016, Knicks (16-13) 12/30/2016, and if you are counting, it could happen Pelicans @ Cavaliers (22-6) 01/02/2017.
Dave Washington, Jr., played linebacker in the NFL for 11 years. He is also Sports Columnist for local Mississippi weekly Newspapers, contributing writer for National Newspaper Publishers Association (NNPA), sportsblog.com and columnist for several on-line News/Sports media and Editor Proplayercompanies.com/media.www.davewashington.com. Read, like and share my work.