Somewhere near and far, New Orleans Pelicans guards Jrue Holiday, Eric Gordon, Austin Rivers and Brian Roberts sat and watched Wednesday's game unfold, recovering from their individual ailments. Somehow, the Pelicans made due without their services. With just two backcourt players available and the surging Los Angeles Clippers in town, the Pelicans pieced together a backcourt and scratched and clawed their way to their second major upset in five days. After beating the two-time defending champion Miami Heat on Saturday, the Pelicans knocked off the Clippers on Wednesday, winning 98-96 before 16,363 fans at the Smoothie King Center. "We've got a great group of guys who continue to compete at a high level with a number of things against us," Pelicans coach Monty Williams said. "No Eric, no Austin, no B-Rob, Tyreke (Evans) steps up and plays point guard for the majority of the game. "Darius (Miller), he's a guy that I didn't know was going to be able to play at that kind of level because he just hasn't done it. To his credit, he stepped up when we needed him. He played point guard, knocked down big shots, and played great defense. Not only did we beat a good team, we beat a team that's got a chance to win a title." The victory pushed the Pelicans' winning streak to four games and snapped a six-game losing streak to the Clippers, who lost for only the second time in their last 15 games. But it wasn't secured until the Clippers' Jamal Crawford missed a 3-point attempt at the buzzer. The win for the Pelicans was an improbable one because their backcourt is such a mess. Holiday, the starting point guard has been lost for the season after requiring surgery to repair a stress fracture in his tibia. Gordon missed his third straight game while he continues to recover from tendinitis in his left knee. Meanwhile, Roberts (bruised left knee) and Rivers (respiratory infection) were added to the list of unavailable players in the hours before the game. But a collection of Anthony Morrow, Tyreke Evans and Darius Miller were able to get the job done.
New Orleans Pelicans beat Los Angeles Clippers 98-96
New Orleans Times-Picayune | Mar 27