First-year player, Anthony Davis, led New Orleans to a 36-point win over Portland. Davis finished the game with 21 points and 11 rebounds. New Orleans had five players in double figures. Al-Farouq Aminu and Greivis Vasquez scored 10 points each. Jason Smith and Ryan Anderson had 13 and 14 points off the bench. Austin Rivers started in place of Eric Gordon, who did not play due to injury. Gordon is prohibited from playing in consecutive games.
New Orleans managed to control the boards (52 to 35), forced a lot of turnovers (Portland had 16) and held Portland to 32.4% field goal shooting. New Orleans controlled the game in every way.
Portland’s high scorer was first-year player, Damian Lillard. Lillard had 12 points, but he went 4 of 15 from the field. LaMarcus Aldridge had a horrible game, with the stat line of six points (2-11 field goal shooting), four blocks and three rebounds. Nicholas Batum scored three points on 1-10 shooting.
Although New Orleans is not close to making the playoffs this season, they are playing with a great deal of pride. Drafting Davis has been profitable for this team, and it seems as if they are taking a step in the right direction.
In the near future, New Orleans will have to decide what their core group of players will be. With Anderson, Davis, Lopez and Vasquez, New Orleans will become of the elite teams in the NBA soon enough.
Due to their record, New Orleans will most likely be a lottery team in the 2013 NBA Draft. Drafting wisely could catapult this team into the spotlight, similar to the Golden State Warriors this season.