Alvin Gentry’s Job Remains Safe — For Now

The Pelicans aren’t considering a coaching change despite a 6-17 start and the worst loss in franchise history, writes William Guillory of The Athletic. However, Guillory speculates Alvin Gentry could be replaced if things don’t turn around soon.

These aren’t the results anyone expected this summer when the Pelicans rebuilt their roster by getting a generous return in the Anthony Davis trade and landed Zion Williamson in the draft after winning the lottery. However, Williamson underwent meniscus surgery in October and hasn’t played yet. It’s part of terrible injury luck throughout the team, leaving Gentry with a shifting lineup from night to night.

That’s being taken into consideration by owner Gayle Benson and executive vice president David Griffin, who has a long relationship with Gentry dating back to their days in Phoenix, Guillory adds. But they want to start seeing some progress, especially once their star rookie returns.

The Pelicans were dreadful Saturday in Dallas, dropping a 46-point decision for their eighth straight loss. They trailed by just 12 points at halftime, but poor shot selection and nine turnovers led to a nightmarish third quarter in which they were outscored 40-14.

“When they got separation, I didn’t think we competed. I think that’s the worst thing in the world to do,” Gentry said. “It was a terrible game — a poorly played game, a poorly coached game. All of us have got to take responsibility.”

Guillory notes that New Orleans faces a daunting schedule between now and Christmas, with six road games including trips to Milwaukee, Philadelphia and Denver. He states that fans calling for a coaching change could become much louder if the team’s record is in the neighborhood of 7-25 or 6-26.

“We control our own destiny. We’ve got to be the ones that compete. We’ve got to be the ones that play hard,” Gentry said. “Obviously, we’re struggling right now. And to be honest with you, Zion is not coming in as the cavalry. We’ve got to play good basketball. … It’s unacceptable the way we’re playing right now. It’s just unacceptable.”

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11 thoughts on “Alvin Gentry’s Job Remains Safe — For Now

  1. Wade Herbers

    NO way I’d rush Zion in any matter. Tank the season , draft another stud and then hit free agency to fill in the rest and boom , playoffs in 2021.

    • hiflew

      Sure, why have him play ever? Some fans have already anointed him as a Hall of Famer. Him playing could never surpass those expectations, he could only either meet them, or more likely not live up to them. If he never plays again, he becomes legendary. Just look at Michael Porter. Last year before he played he was the best player in his class, now he is an end of the bench guy that scores 4 points a game in garbage time.

      (This is tongue in cheek to anyone slow enough to not figure that out.)

      • x%sure

        I was thinking cynical… anyway not completely wrong.

        I figured the quality rookies would see a lot of time off initially. That’s probably how it’s going to be from now on.

    • @wade why would a team tank… any team? Tanking doesn’t work !!

      The New Orleans Pelicans have FOUR guys that teams tanked for and they’re not winning.

      You want to tank for one guy to draft next year? That’s absurd. I’ve said this time and time and time again tanking never works.

      You’ve got Lonzo ball and Brandon Ingram, who the Lakers tanked for. You got Zion Williamson who the Pelicans tanked for by not playing Anthony Davis and he’s not even playing LOL.

      Tanking doesn’t work. Play to win and improve your scouting Department. Many teams draft excellent players at number 10 or 25 or even in the second round.

  2. x%sure

    I would have started Favors and rotated Jaxon Hayes backnforth in the GLeague. That would send a message, train Hayes, and get Favors going. Meanwhile Gentry has NAW spotting at 2 or 3 with no clear 1… Redick is doing that. Ingram looks to be on a (personal) salary drive. I’m sure there are good reasons for Gentry’s actions in a weird year but it’s not what was planned!

  3. amk3510

    They fired Monty for taking them to the playoffs but this guy has 1 playoff trip in 5 years and his job isn’t in danger.

  4. LordBanana

    They were over hyped this year anyway, they have one all NBA talent and a bunch of promising young guys. They need time.

  5. Skip, Tampa

    They have a bucket full of draft picks, some good young player and filler to go after an All Star to pair with Holiday.
    Then again they can trade Holiday and Ingram for more picks and a 76ers sytle process for the next 3 or 4 years.
    Lots of great options.

    • So now they’ll go back to what they had before? You want to go young guys and draft picks, or you want to trade them all for an All-Star? Make up your mind.

  6. IslandFlava

    Ingram is the only bright spot so far in the Big Easy.
    Jrue, Okafor & Hayes are doing well too.
    Zion is gonna be a beast once he is back.
    All the rest have been truly disappointing so far, Ball, JJ, NAW, Favors…

  7. Skip, Tampa

    Not really, believe that’s exactly to the point.
    Just a matter of what Griffin wants to do and how Gentry can best get it done at this point.
    Lots of options and talent for this team right now.
    Do think Ingram is playing more for a contract than the team.

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