New Orleans Pelicans Earn First Win With Block Party
Anthony Davis stuffed the stat sheet once again for the New Orleans Pelicans, and on Saturday night, he and his teammates earned their first win of the season.
A franchise record 18 blocks propelled the Pelicans (1-2) to a dominant 105-84 victory over the Charlotte Bobcats (1-2).
Davis had a team-high and career-high 6 of those 18 blocks, as well as a career-best 6 steals and 4 assists. He also pulled down 8 rebounds and led all scorers with 25. In three games this season, Davis has scored 20, 26, and 25.
"I'm just trying to hustle and everything I need to do to help my team win," Davis said at his locker in postgame. "If it's me diving on the floor to save the ball, or making transition buckets, that's what I'm going to do. We've got to have that mentality to win games."
Coming off an embarrassing loss on Friday night, the Pelicans needed a victory in a big way. Being able to move on from the loss with their best performance of the young season made New Orleans head coach Monty Williams happy.
“That shows some resiliency to come back from what was pretty embarrassing last night,” explained Williams. “We’ve got a lot of character on our team, and it’ll just get better as we grow.”
In addition to Davis' career-best 6 blocks, Jason Smith matched his career-best with 5, while backup Center Greg Stiemsma set a new career-high with 5.
"The right opportunities came tonight," explained Stiemsma. "We feed of our defense. When we're playing well, it gets out offense going."
It was a team effort defensively, and for a head coach who preaches defense night and day, Williams was pleased with his club's effort on that side of the floor.
“We’ve raised the bar for how we play and how we want to play everyday,” Williams said. “I just love our defensive numbers tonight, holding them to 37%, 84 points, and 18 blocked shots.”
Offensively, three Pelicans other than Davis reached double-figures. Starting point guard Jrue Holiday scored 14. His backup Brian Roberts added 13 off the bench. Tyreke Evans reached double-figures for the first time in a New Orleans uniform, chipping in 15.
Next up, New Orleans welcomes the 2-0 Phoenix Suns for a Tuesday night matchup. Tip-off is set for 7:00.