The New Orleans Pelicans move to trade their 2015 first round pick for Houston Rocket’s center Omar Asik and $1.5 million recently is an interesting one. Asik is on the final year of his three year $25.1 million contract. The Pelicans will only have to pay Asik $8.3 million this season.
Asik is a starting caliber center and is an immediate and significant upgrade over New Orleans’ current centers. Asik is an outstanding rebounder, averaging 7.9 rebounds a game, while only averaging 20.2 minutes a game. This while sometimes being on the floor with one of the game’s premier rebounders, Dwight Howard. Omar also averaged 5.8 points in that same period. In New Orleans, Asik will not be pressured to produce offensively since the Pelicans have a plethora of scoring options already on the roster.
The addition of Asik puts New Orleans into playoff contention. The Pelicans now have six young (between 27 and 21 years old) and very talented players. The New Orleans frontcourt has up-and-coming forward Anthony Davis, sharpshooter Ryan Anderson and rebounder Omar Asik. The backcourt has three stars in the making in, Eric Gordon, Tyreke Evans and Jrue Holiday.
New Orleans is putting together a fantastic roster. If the Pelicans can develop the players they have on their roster, expect them to compete for championships in the not too distant future.
The trade could turn sour if New Orleans has a poor season and does not make the playoffs however. Omar Asik would likely leave in free agency in pursuit of a more competitive team and the Pelicans will be out a lottery pick in next year’s NBA draft.