The New Orleans Pelicans didn’t have enough fire power on the offensive end without Anthony Davis and Ryan Anderson as they fell to the Utah Jazz 100-96 at the Smoothie King Center on Monday night. The Pelicans did their best to make up the difference on the defensive side of the ball with 17 blocks, but it wasn’t enough as the Jazz came away with the road victory.
Gordon Hayward led the way for the Jazz with 32 points on 10-for-22 shooting from the floor and 9-for-11 from the free-throw line. He added a team-high eight assists, seven rebounds and a pair of steals as Utah improved to 19-33 on the season. Derrick Favors and Enes Kanter also made nice contributions in the win. Favors finished with 18 points on 50 percent shooting from the floor to go along with seven rebounds, two assists and two blocks while Kanter added 14 points on 50 percent shooting and 11 rebounds. Steve Novak chipped in with 12 points off the bench on 4-for-5 shooting from beyond the arc.
Eric Gordon and Tyreke Evans carried the load for New Orleans in the loss. Gordon had 31 points on 9-for-14 shooting from the floor, including 7-for-8 from 3-point land. He added three assists, three rebounds and two steals to go along with six turnovers while Evans managed 18 points, 10 assists and seven rebounds. Luke Babbitt also had a solid showing with 15 points and six rebounds while Omer Asik registered six points, eight rebounds and five blocked shots.
Jimmer Fredette went scoreless after he missed his only shot in just 8.2 seconds of court time even though the Pelicans were without some of their key weapons. Monty Williams chose instead to give the backup guard minutes to Toney Douglas who recently signed a contract with New Orleans. Douglas saw 24:59 of action and had eight points on 2-for-7 shooting, including 1-for-4 from distance. He added five rebounds, two assists, two blocks and a steal.
This scenario can’t come as a shock to anyone (including Jimmer), since Williams has done this same thing on multiple occasions this season with players on the roster for a short time. Fredette plays well for a stretch before losing minutes to players like Gal Mekel and Nate Wolters. Mekel lasted 15 days with the Pelicans before getting waived while Wolters made it through two 10-day contracts and saw time in 10 games, according to Basketball-reference.com.
Up next for Fredette and the Pelicans is a home matchup with the Indiana Pacers before a huge break for all-star weekend.