By Nick Villano @nick_villano on March 15, 2014
The New Orleans Pelicans have not had the best season in 2013-14. Although their record is not great, they have seen very good seasons out of Anthony Davis and Ryan Anderson. They seem to be a few small pieces away from being playoff contenders in the near future. There are a lot of free agents that could help them. They don't have a ton of cap space, so they have to go small, but they could put together a really good team.
Defense out of the guard position is something that would really help this team. Avery Bradley may be the very best in the NBA. He is developing his offense this season under new coach Brad Stevens. He could bring a lot to this team if the price is right. They can't spend too much more on the guard position after last year's spending spree, but Bradley is a need.
Jimmer Fredette is going to be a low risk option to be a backup that could turn his career around on the right team. With Tyreke Evans, Jrue Holiday and Eric Gordon on the team, there will be no pressure on that fourth guard. It will be interesting to see how he works out in Chicago. Based on that, the Pelicans should take a chance on the former BYU product.
Emeka Okafor is another draft bust who could turn around his career in a backup role. He will probably come at a minimum contract, so the price is right. He is coming off a herniated disk. It is a definite risk, but it is one that could provide dividends.
Steve Blake is a great option to replace the expiring Al-Farouq Aminu as the backup point guard. He has been on seven different teams, so he knows how to adapt to a locker room. He will come at a low price and will help out with the younger guards on the team.
The No. 1 need on this team is a legit center. Pairing someone with Davis is a must. Right now they have Alexis Ajinca starting. Gortat will provide a presence on the defensive side and will help with rebounding. He is capable of averaging a double-double per game and should be the centerpiece acquisition this offseason.
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