Pelicans Win 3rd Straight Behind Pondexter’s Career Night
New Orleans Pelicans starting small forward Quincy Pondexter poured in a career-high 25 points, including a dagger 3 pointer late in Wednesday’s game versus the Brooklyn Nets, propelling the Pelicans to their third consecutive victory, 102-96
“We believe in ourselves in that locker room,” said Pondexter after the win. “We are going to give 110% effort every night.”
For Pondexter, his effort had him on the floor for the entire second half.
“I was definitely tired. He (coach Monty Williams) asked me if I wanted to come out and I said ‘no’,” said Pondexter. “Those last 4 or 5 minutes were really just all heart.”
The third straight victory for New Orleans comes at a time when they are without the services of Anthony Davis, Ryan Anderson and Jrue Holiday due to various injuries.
In the 4th quarter, the Pelicans held an 83-82 lead before forward Luke Babbitt nailed a three pointer to begin a 10-0 run for New Orleans.
“I think its (3 game win streak) big with having guys out,” said Babbitt. “If we can just hold down the fort a little bit until they come back, we can be in good position.”
New Orleans (30-27) is currently positioned 9th in the Western Conference, two games behind the Oklahoma City Thunder who are in 8th. The top 8 teams earn a playoff slot.
“We’re missing Ryan and Jrue and A.D. Those are great players,” explained Pondexter. “We’re in the playoff chase. The next night, it might be somebody else (who steps up with a career game). That’s been our team lately. We see what the end goal is and we want to get there.”
Babbitt finished with 8 on the Pelicans bench, while fellow reserves Alexis Ajinca (10 points) and Norris Cole (11 points) made major impacts.
Starting guard Tyreke Evans chipped in a double-double of 15 points and 11 assists, while starting center Omer Asik earned a double-double as well, going for 12 points and 13 rebounds.
Dante Cunningham finished with 13, while Eric Gordon added 8, much to the delight of the home crowd who was in it from start to finish.
“When the crowd pushes us, it gives us more energy,” said Ajinca. “That is a great plus for us.”
Pelicans fans next opportunity to give the team energy is Friday night at the Smoothie King Center when New Orleans hosts the Miami Heat (25-31). Tip-off is set for 7:00.