Anthony Davis is still a few years from even entering the danger zone for a contract extension (one would think) and the period where the Pelicans would have to start seriously considering trading him if things haven’t turned around since he hasn’t committed to the team long-term.
Davis has always stated his loyalty to the Pelicans and his desire to stay in New Orleans for the long haul, until now.
Here is an excerpt of a piece from Adrian Wojnarowkski:
“Boston has remained vigilant on the possibility of acquiring Davis, and Davis knows it. However, the Pelicans have no intention of trading an all-world talent under contract through 2021, no matter the return.
Before the Cousins trade a year ago, though, Davis kept hearing talk of the Celtics trying to trade for him. He walked into GM Dell Demps’ office and asked about it.
“He told me that [Boston] was calling, but nothing was going to happen,” Davis said. “At the same time, though, you see how organizations treat players. Isaiah Thomas. DeMarcus [Cousins] told me that the [Kings] told him that he wasn’t going to get traded, but they traded him. Isaiah took his team to the Eastern Conference finals, and they traded him.
“It makes you wonder: Does this organization really have my back? I’ve been loyal to this organization. I love it here. I love this team. I think we’re moving in the right direction. DeMarcus, Rondo, some other players that are helping us, but people get judged on winning. And I want to win.
“You look at the Warriors, Cleveland, Boston,” he said. “They lose Gordon [Hayward], they’re still playing well. KD-Steph-Draymond-Klay. They play so well with each other. They move the basketball. They don’t care who scores. Steph and Draymond are out, and they still won. KD is out. They still win.
“That’s the way the league is now. I don’t see anyone winning without three or four All-Stars. … I was in the [MVP] conversation in my third year, and we didn’t win. We went to the playoffs, got swept, and I dropped out of all that so fast. It’s about winning. You can have all the numbers in the world, but you better win. That’s what it is. This whole league, everything is about winning. Every award. Everything. It’s all about winning.”
Davis has a player option for 2020 and it appears he is putting some pressure on the Pelicans to improve the roster around him for the first time. It seems really hard for them to find a path to improve the roster much more with their current cap situation though as they have basically no cap space and will win too many games this season to have a game-changing 1st round draft pick and not enough wins or success to really contend in any manner.
If the Pelicans are unable to sign or get some good value for DeMarcus Cousins in a deal before the deadline, Davis could be a goner a lot sooner than you would think.
The flood gates are about to open if they haven’t already behind the scenes.