Through six games in the NBA preseason, the New Orleans Pelicans are one of only two teams in the entire league and the only team in the Western Conference with an unblemished record in the preseason. After all, though, this is the preseason, which begs the question of what does their undefeated record thus far actually mean?
The Pelicans are heading into the 2013-14 season with high expectations after their off-season acquisitions. They landed All-Star point guard Jrue Holiday on the night of the 2013 NBA Draft in exchange for the rights to Nerlens Noel and then completed a sign-and-trade not long after that landed them former Rookie of the Year Tyreke Evans.
With an improved backcourt and another year of development under the belts of Anthony Davis and Ryan Anderson, there’s no doubt that they are loaded with talent throughout their roster. In fact, their array of talent is exactly why they’ve been able to have so much success in the preseason.
While Davis has been a constant force for New Orleans in the preseason, the rest of the Pelicans have been somewhat inconsistent on a game-to-game basis. However, what has made them successful and dangerous is the fact that they have a number of guys that can help lead them to victory on any given night—and that’s even with Evans being sidelined for the majority of the preseason.
The great thing about how the Pelicans have been able to win in the preseason is that it seems like something that can translate to the regular season. These players are still developing a rapport, but their individual talent that can help lead them to victories won’t change from the preseason to the regular season.
However, this team still has work to do before the regular season gets underway in a week. Individual performances to grab wins can only lead a team so far. They have to be able to develop a more consistent and free-flowing offense if they want to wind up being a playoff team this year. Moreover, they also need to become a better defensive team.
You can’t read too much into just about anything in the preseason and records are included in that. The Philadelphia 76ers being 2-4 in the preseason is certainly a good indicator of that. However, the Pelicans have shown positive signs in the preseason and should only continue to get better as they continue to get more accustomed to playing together. Their 6-0 record in the preseason may not mean too much, but it’s a good sign for this newly constructed team.