2013 NBA Free Agency: New Orleans Pelicans Wisely Bring Back Al-Farouq Aminu

By Ryan Heckman


Kevin Liles-USA TODAY Sports

This free agency period has been quite eventful for the New Orleans Pelicans so far. Bringing in point guard Jrue Holidy, signing guard Tyreke Evans via trade and now bringing back a vital part of the rotation in re-signing Al-Farouq Aminu have all been great moves.

Aminu, only 22 years old, is an athletic 6’9” forward who played very well last season for the Pelicans. In 27 minutes per game, he averaged 7.3 points, 7.7 rebounds 1.4 assists and 1.2 steals.

Being able to rebound as well as he can at the small forward position is incredibly valuable. With Holiday and Evans spacing the floor next year, Aminu will be a great option as a stretch forward coming off the bench to make his presence felt in the lane and paint area.

Shooting over 47 percent from the field, Aminu proved his worth offensively. He’s not a threat beyond the arc, but can be a major asset in the mid-range game and more often than not will score down low off of a rebound.

Defensively, Aminu can do a few things. His long frame allows him to guard even power forwards if necessary, which could come in handy if New Orleans ever decides to go with a smaller lineup having Evans and Eric Gordon on the floor at the same time.

He is also good, like stated above, for over a steal per game — showing he is active on the defensive end not only with rebounding but looking for opportunities to create turnovers.

This was a move the Pelicans needed to make. He only signed a one year contract, but depending on how he continues to improve, Aminu could be a vital part of the team going forward.

Ryan Heckman is a Senior NBA Writer for RantSports.com. Follow him on Twitter  @ryanmheckman, “Like” him on Facebook or add him to your network on Google.

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