Pelicans Fall To .500 In Loss To Magic
The New Orleans Pelicans return from All-Star break wasn't a good one, as they fell to Elfrid Payton and the Orlando Magic on Friday night, 95-84.
New Orleans led by 4 after two quarters, but never quite got in synch.
All-Star Anthony Davis saw his first action in over two weeks since injuring his shoulder versus the Chicago Bulls. Usually fearless and dominant, Davis seemed a bit apprehensive on both sides of the floor.
While he finished with a double-double (13 points, 11 rebounds), Davis was unhappy with his play, and that of his team, especially in the second half when the Magic went on a run.
"We stopped making shots. Nothing was falling," explained Davis. "They (Orlando) were making shots and hustling."
Rookie Orlando point guard Elfrid Payton, who played collegiate for Louisiana's Ragin' Cajuns, chipped in a double-double of his own, going for 10 points, 11 assists, and 7 rebounds.
"In the second half we got back to what we do," said Payton after the game. "Guys were helping each other and we did a good job on the boards and the big guys are protecting the paint."
Orlando dominated New Orleans in the paint, scoring 64 compared to the Pelicans 36.
"They (Magic) outworked us," said Pelicans coach Monty Williams. "They had so many multiple-effort plays we didn't react to, whether it was backdoor (cuts) or offensive rebounds"
Pelicans guard Tyreke Evans led the team in scoring with 14 to go along with 10 assists and 8 rebounds.
With the loss, New Orleans falls to 27-27, and sport a 10-17 road record.
Saturday night, the Pelicans remain on the road for the second back of a back to back, taking on the Miami Heat. Tip-off is set for 6:30.