SportsPulse: USA TODAY Sports’ Jeff Zillgitt breaks down the highs and lows of the NBA trade deadline.
The NBA trade deadline has come and gone … and Anthony Davis is still a member of the New Orleans Pelicans.
Now that he will no longer jeopardize his trade value by playing, the Pelicans have committed to playing the All-NBA center for the rest of the season.
The team issued a statement Thursday night from general manager Dell Demps that explained the factors involved in the decision:
“Ultimately, Anthony made it clear to us that he wants to play, and he gives our team the best opportunity to win games … We look forward to seeing Anthony in a Pelicans uniform again soon.”
Davis, who has missed the last nine games with a finger injury, requested a trade on Jan. 28 and told team officials he planned to leave as a free agent after next season. As a result, the Pelicans had at least considered sitting him for the rest of the season.
Although he’s been cleared to practice, the Pelicans were reportedly concerned Davis might get hurt again — which would reduce his trade value this offseason.
The NBA discourages teams from resting healthy players, especially for long portions of the season. The league even sent out a memo in October that said any team “that rests a healthy player in circumstances that are, in the opinion of the Commissioner, prejudicial or detrimental to the NBA shall be subject to a penalty under … the NBA Constitution.”
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