Pelicans Waive Wenyen Gabriel, Malcolm Hill, James Banks

The Pelicans have waived three players, per a team press release. New Orleans has cut training camp players James Banks and Malcolm Hill, plus the non-guaranteed contract of power forward Wenyen Gabriel. As Andrew Lopez of ESPN notes (Twitter link), this move reduces the team’s current roster to 15 players, plus two players on two-way contracts.

The Pelicans announced the additions of Banks and Hill over the weekend. Gabriel saw action in 21 games during the 2021/22 season.

It was generally considered an uphill battle for either Banks, a 6’10” center out of Georgia Tech, or Hill, a 6’6″ wing out of Illinois, to make the opening night roster for New Orleans. Both players had been inked to Exhibit 10 training camp contracts, and will now mostly likely join the Pelicans’ NBAGL affiliate club, the Birmingham Squadron.

After going undrafted in 2018 out of Kentucky, the 6’9″ Gabriel joined the Kings on a two-way deal for the 2018/19 season. His contract was converted to a standard deal ahead of the 2019/20, and he was eventually dealt to the Trail Blazers. He signed with the Pelicans as a free agent during the 2020 offseason. In his 21 games with the club, he averaged 3.4 PPG and 2.6 RPG across 11.5 MPG.

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