Pelicans ready to tip off 2015-2016 season - FOX 8 WVUE New Orleans News, Weather, Sports, Social

Pelicans ready to tip off 2015-2016 season

Anthony Davis is excited about the Pelicans' chances this season. (FOX 8 Photo) Anthony Davis is excited about the Pelicans' chances this season. (FOX 8 Photo)
NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) -

The New Orleans Pelicans are just under a month away from tipping off their season.    

After making the NBA playoffs last season and hiring Alvin Gentry as their new head coach, the Pelicans now carry their highest expectations of the Anthony Davis era.

Davis is the face of the franchise, an MVP candidate and a full out star.

"That whole locker room and this whole coaching staff is excited. This city is excited," Davis said. "Hopefully, we can keep this thing going, and do the same as last year, but a little better."

But the addition of Alvin Gentry, who helped Golden State win it all, and his up-tempo style of play is what the Pelicans believe will lead them to the next level.

"I wanted the team back together, I saw potential, I think this team has great depth," Gentry said. "These guys truly believe that they should have had an opportunity to be in the playoffs. But they went into it, thinking they could win the series and that's the first battle you have to overcome."

The team brought back nearly its entire roster from last year, saying continuity and team chemistry are crucial. The players held their own workouts this summer and cannot wait to get started.

Both Gentry and General Manager Dell Demps are preaching a sense of desperation and urgency to begin camp, and if the team maintains that throughout the season, they can compete for a championship.

"On paper at least, it looks good. But that's going to be key to us also is that how do we handle the expectations, the praise, the pats on the back, the blue collar mentality, because that's when I thought we were at best, playing with urgency and desperation," Demps said. "Sometimes it got ugly and scrappy, but that's going to be important to us, focusing on the task."

The Pelicans leave Monday for camp in West Virginia at the Greenbrier, just like the Saints.

Point guard Jrue Holiday will be on a minutes-restriction to start the year, but says he is pain free, and overall the Pelicans are hoping for an injury-free campaign.

The regular season tips off Oct. 27 for the Pelicans. They face the defending NBA champions, the Golden State Warriors.

Copyright 2015 WVUE. All rights reserved.

  • SportsMore>>

  • After Further Review: Four intriguing Saints players to watch as training camp opens

    After Further Review: Four intriguing Saints players to watch as training camp opens

    Peterson still looks the part. The question is, can he still get it done at 32? (Source: Garland Gillen, FOX 8)Peterson still looks the part. The question is, can he still get it done at 32? (Source: Garland Gillen, FOX 8)

    Four Saints players to keep an eye on during training camp. 

    more>>

    Four Saints players to keep an eye on during training camp. 

    more>>
  • FFF: The Saints need to win now

    FFF: The Saints need to win now

    Drew Brees could be done with the Saints if they fail to make the playoffs in 2017. Source: Nola.comDrew Brees could be done with the Saints if they fail to make the playoffs in 2017. Source: Nola.com

    FOOTBALL This 7-9 business won't work again on Airline Drive. You finish with that mark four years in a row, and Drew Brees will be gone after the 2017 season. Vegas has the Saints over/under on wins at 8, so the bettors think they'll stay close to that 7-9 record. Will they finish at .500, or under again as they did in 2014-16, I can't give you a definitive answer on that. No Dannell Ellerbe this season, and the offensive line missing Terron Armstead and Max Unger for cam...

    more>>

    FOOTBALL This 7-9 business won't work again on Airline Drive. You finish with that mark four years in a row, and Drew Brees will be gone after the 2017 season. Vegas has the Saints over/under on wins at 8, so the bettors think they'll stay close to that 7-9 record. Will they finish at .500, or under again as they did in 2014-16, I can't give you a definitive answer on that. No Dannell Ellerbe this season, and the offensive line missing Terron Armstead and Max Unger for cam...

    more>>
  • After Further Review: Four intriguing Saints players as camp opens

    After Further Review: Four intriguing Saints players as camp opens

    Peterson still looks the part. The question is, can he still get it done at 32? (Source: Garland Gillen, FOX 8)Peterson still looks the part. The question is, can he still get it done at 32? (Source: Garland Gillen, FOX 8)
    David Onyemata In 2016, the Saints drafted two defensive tackles: Sheldon Rankins and David Onyemata. The injury to Nick Fairley has put that haul into complete focus this season. The expectations for Rankins are high but the development of Onyemata could be almost as important.  He has the athleticism and versatility to be an effective defensive lineman. The question is has he developed enough to step into a more prominent role? The Saints sure hope so.  Hau’Oli Ki...more>>
    David Onyemata In 2016, the Saints drafted two defensive tackles: Sheldon Rankins and David Onyemata. The injury to Nick Fairley has put that haul into complete focus this season. The expectations for Rankins are high but the development of Onyemata could be almost as important.  He has the athleticism and versatility to be an effective defensive lineman. The question is has he developed enough to step into a more prominent role? The Saints sure hope so.  Hau’Oli Ki...more>>
Powered by Frankly