After Davis Trade, Pelicans now must integrate new players with Zion Williamson, Jrue Holiday

The New Orleans Pelicans had to make a move. Even with the prospect of the transcendent Zion Williamson coming in, Anthony Davis still wanted out.

After a lot of consideration, and NOLA’s executive Vice President David Griffin committed to trying to keep Davis, the Pelicans finally gave in and pulled the trigger on a massive Anthony Davis trade this last week.

Give to the Pelicans, they had their backs against the wall and ultimately got a really great deal when they received three promising young players in Brandon Ingram, Lonzo Ball, and Josh Hart along with four first round picks including the Lakers’ #4 pick in the upcoming NBA Draft. This was one of those rare trades where, considering the circumstances, both teams came out in a better place. That’s to say that the Lakers did quite well, too.

With Anthony Davis in a Lakers jersey, now it’s a matter of how will those three young player will integrate with Zion Williamson, as well as Jrue Holiday and Julius Randle. If these were veterans coming onto the team, there would be less of a concern, but young players tend to play the way they want to play and more often are looking to show off the full array of their skill set.

Julius Randle Walks Away from Ingram Again

As exciting as the prospect of having three exciting young forwards in Williamson, Julius Randle, and Ingram – that wasn’t just going to work out.  Julius Randle certainly recognized that. On the heels of the trade, Randle opted out of his player option and entered free agency.

Remember, Randle already played with Ingram on the Lakers and there clearly wasn’t enough for both to eat, so they traded Randle away. Randle’s move might be trying to get ahead of repeating that history.

If Randle doesn’t re-sign with the Pelicans then that will make things a lot easier on the Pelicans. As shown in his Duke days, Zion doesn’t always need the ball to be effective, Ingram does.  It’s sad, we were excited to see a lineup that featured both Randle and Williamson.

Guard Glut in New Orleans

Now with the addition of Ball and Hart, there’s a lot of positional redundancy at the guard spot. We just can’t fathom the idea of anyone else starting outside of the underrated Jrue Holiday, so who will start alongside him — will it continue to be E’Twaun Moore or one of the new Lakers’ players?

Lonzo wouldn’t make much sense as they have more capable shooters in Moore and Hart to start at shooting guard and it would place an unnecessary spotlight on the young guard’s inconsistent shooting. That comes down to Moore and Hart and we think that will play itself out in training camp.

Add to the #4 pick that the Pelicans have in this year’s draft, projected to be either Darius Garland or Coby White– both are point guards, and it further complicates the Pelican’s situation. We know that having more options than not enough is preferable, but that means the Pelicans are going to have to make a lot of tough personnel decisions.

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