The Pelicans have waived Nate Robinson, the team announced. He was the team’s starting point guard in its opening game Tuesday. However, he only played 19 minutes in that game, and just four in Wednesday’s contest, one in which usual starter Jrue Holiday returned to action. The release of Robinson’s non-guaranteed deal leaves New Orleans with 14 players, one below the regular season limit.
Injuries beset the team during the preseason, and Holiday remains on a minutes restriction. Backup point guard Norris Cole is a couple of weeks into a recovery from a high ankle sprain that’s expected to keep him out for as long as six weeks, and Tyreke Evans, who’s also taken on point guard duties in the past, is about a week into a six-to-eight week recovery from knee surgery. Still, New Orleans has given the majority of its minutes at point guard to Ish Smith, whom the Pelicans claimed off waivers Monday.
The team signed Robinson two weeks ago as part of its effort to offset injuries at the point, but it appears the Pelicans would rather go with Smith and perhaps Toney Douglas, with whom the team is reportedly in talks. In any case, Robinson will receive a sliver of his $1,499,187 for sticking on the roster a few days.