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Pelicans, Greg Smith Deal Nixed

11:59pm: The sides had a signed contract, and the Pelicans voided it, according to the RealGM transactions log.

9:30pm: Smith has failed his physical, which means the pending agreement between the two sides has been canceled, John Reid of The Times-Picayune reports.

2:29pm: The Pelicans are bringing aboard four-year NBA veteran Greg Smith, sources tell Scott Kushner for The New Orleans Advocate, who indicates that the big man has already put pen to paper on a non-guaranteed contract. The team has yet to make an official announcement, but the Pelicans yesterday revealed that starting center Omer Asik is set to miss three weeks with a right calf strain, and they’re also without backup center Alexis Ajinca for about four to six weeks as he deals with a strained right hamstring. The move will give New Orleans 19 players, 13 of whom have full guarantees, as our roster count shows.

Smith, 24, didn’t appear to generate much interest in free agency this summer after he saw little playing time for the Mavs, who didn’t re-sign him in spite of their need at center. He failed to impress in a workout last month for China’s Guangdong Southern Tigers, as international journalist David Pick reported. He’s spent most of his time in the NBA with the Rockets, who gave him 15.9 minutes per game in 70 contests, including 10 starts, during the 2012/13 season, but they waived him shortly before the 2014 playoffs. The Bulls snapped him up just days later and signed him to a deal that included a fully guaranteed 2014/15 season, but he never made it into a game for Chicago before a trade sent him to the Mavs.

The Pelicans focused on the backcourt with their camp invitees, as power forward Jeff Adrien had been the only frontcourt player without a full guarantee on the New Orleans roster. Shooting guard Bryce Dejean-Jones is the sole Pelican with a partial guarantee, as he’s assured of $50K, so Smith would appear to have a decent chance to hang around into the regular season.

Do you think the Pelicans should keep Smith into the regular season even if Asik is back for opening night? Leave a comment to tell us.

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