NBA trade rumors: Can the Pelicans really keep Anthony Davis in New Orleans?

first_imgRemember, Davis is under contract for the 2019-20 season, so Griffin could potentially keep Davis until next year’s trade deadline. What if the Pelicans use that time to persuade Davis to stay? New Orleans coach Alvin Gentry believes Davis got “some bad advice” regarding his trade request. Maybe all it takes is a few conversations to swing him the other way.Prior to the Pelicans hiring Griffin, there was a zero percent chance of Davis sticking around. A trade this offseason appeared to be a foregone conclusion.It’s still more likely than not a Davis deal happens. But Griffin’s strategy sets up New Orleans to either keep one of the best players in the NBA or land a terrific package of assets. Not bad for his first day on the job. David Griffin accepted the job of executive vice president of basketball operations with the Pelicans knowing he had one straightforward-yet-complex task in front of him: building the perfect Anthony Davis trade to jump-start a rebuild.Or, at least, that appeared to be the task. At his introductory press conference Wednesday, Griffin seemed to open another door. OFFSEASON PREVIEWS:Lakers | Knicks | Bulls | Pelicans | MavericksDavid Griffin on Anthony Davis: “We have a long successful history with Klutch Sports. Rich Paul and I have spoke about Anthony. We are both excited about what we could potentially build here.”— Andrew Lopez (@_Andrew_Lopez) April 17, 2019David Griffin: “Rich Paul and I were part of succeeding. They will understand when I say this, ‘You are either all the way or all the way out.'”Griff going strong here. He believes Anthony Davis will want to stay.— Andrew Lopez (@_Andrew_Lopez) April 17, 2019Davis was clear in late January. He told the Pelicans he had no intention of signing an extension and wanted a trade out of New Orleans. But that was before Griffin came on board, a move that could make a huge difference for Davis and his Klutch Sports agent, Rich Paul.Griffin has a history with Paul, who also represents Lakers star LeBron James. Griffin served as the general manager in Cleveland from 2014-17, making key acquisitions throughout his tenure and consistently building a contending roster around James. Landing James and Kevin Love stands out, but Griffin acquired strong role players like JR Smith, Iman Shumpert, Channing Frye and Kyle Korver. He fired coach David Blatt and replaced him with Tyronn Lue in 2016, a surprising move at the time but one that ultimately yielded a championship.When Griffin meets with Davis — he has not yet spoken to him directly — he can sell the big man on his experience surrounding a top-five player with the right kind of talent. Even if Paul is intent on pushing Davis to the Lakers (or any other franchise), he can’t deny Griffin’s resume or his impact on James’ career.If no one appreciated you Griff I did, and hopefully all the people of Cleveland! Thanks for what u did for the team for 3 yrs! We got us 1🏆— LeBron James (@KingJames) June 20, 2017TRADE RUMORS:Pelicans keeping Jrue Holiday will have league-wide impactKeeping Davis would be an incredible turnaround for the Pelicans, but Griffin could also be playing a different game. His press conference sent a message to all of the Davis suitors out there: If you want a six-time All-Star forward firmly in the prime of his career, you’re going to pay top dollar.By planting the idea that Davis could stay in New Orleans and change his mind about that five-year, $240 million extension, Griffin is telling teams like the Lakers, Celtics, Clippers and Knicks (winning the draft lottery could make New York a real threat) that they better come with their best offer. There is no holding back on draft picks and prospects.last_img

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