Anthony Davis suffers concussion in Pelicans’ 146-114 loss in Denver

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A bad start, a bad break and a bad performance led to a bad result for the New Orleans Pelicans at Denver Friday night.

Before a national television audience, the Pelicans continued to display a total lack of defensive prowess, perhaps a lack of defensive effort in a 146-114 road loss to the Nuggets.

Pelicans head coach Alvin Gentry minced no words afterwards in summing up his team’s performance.

“It sucked, it sucked,” Gentry said. “That’s my thoughts on the game. We didn’t do anything right, and everything was terrible, coaching included. It was an embarrassment. We embarrassed our franchise, and that includes everyone.”

While his assessment was candid and correct, it hardly excuses what we witnessed.

How bad was the defense? The 144 points are the most scored by an NBA team this season. Once again, New Orleans allowed an opponent to eclipse the 50 percent mark from the field as Denver (9-6) shot 52.7 percent (48-of-91). It is more troubling when you consider the fact that the Nuggets were coming off of their worst offensive performance of the season, scoring just 82 points in a loss to Portland Monday night.

It is bad enough to give up 30 or more points in a quarter. The Pelicans gave up 40 or more twice Friday night, including 82 points to Denver in the second half.

It was an embarrassing start for the Pelicans, who fell behind by 27 points in the first quarter, virtually deciding the outcome before they hardly got started.

Give New Orleans credit for battling back to within eight points at 66-58 in the third quarter as Anthony Davis connected on a jumper when the bad break occurred as Davis was injured and the Pelicans fell apart.

Davis was playing well, with 17 points, when he was injured early in the third quarter. He was struck unintentionally by Nikola Jokic, whose Jokic’ head hit Davis face when Jokic was attempting to back Davis down in the post.

It was as though the sky had fallen, the ceiling collapsed and the weight of the world caved in on the Pelicans after Davis departed. While he is a great player and obviously a key component, the total surrender was difficult to watch.

Jamal Murray scored 31 points to lead the Nuggets. Demarcus Cousins had just 14 points and six rebounds for the Pelicans (8-8). E’Twaun Moore scored 16 points off the bench and Rajon Rondo had 13 points and six assists in 25 minutes in his second start. Denver crushed the Pelicans 48-29 on the boards.

New Orleans returns home to host Oklahoma City Monday night. The Thunder (7-8) have been a disappointment thus far this season, despite the acquisitions of Paul George and Carmelo Anthony.

The Pelicans still have not beaten a team with a winning record this season when they played them. Fortunately, the Thunder are not a winning team, at this point. Perhaps there is hope. Of course, that hope is tempered by what we saw Friday night and by the fact that Davis could miss time, though there is no official word on his condition yet.

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Ken Trahan

CEO/Owner

Born and raised in the New Orleans area, CCSE CEO Ken Trahan has been a sports media fixture in the community for nearly four decades. Ken started NewOrleans.com/Sports with Bill Hammack and Don Jones in 2008. In 2011, the site became SportsNOLA.com. On August 1, 2017, Ken helped launch CrescentCitySports.com. Having accumulated national awards/recognition (National Sports Media Association, National Football…

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