You already know this, especially if you’re a Pelicans fan, but Stanley Johnson has been BAD on the offensive end in New Orleans, way below even his very low standards. He scored 6 in his debut with them, which was his high before this game. He had two other games where he made more than 1 shot. Yeah. Not good. So it goes without saying that this is by far his best game with the Pelicans.
The funny thing is, when I heard the Bucks traded for him, before we all found out the true nature of the trade, I talked myself into him. Honest to god, I was like “well, we don’t need him to score because we have enough scoring, and I guess we could use a talented defender for tough playoff matchups”. I honestly thought those words. Then it turned out that he was going to New Orleans, Thon Maker was still going away, and the Bucks were getting Nikola Mirotic. Who, it turns out, is way easier to talk yourself into.
The one positive I can see for the Pelicans is that they dragged the LeBron-stopper back into the Western Conference so that they can stop LeBron when they meet in the playoffs. Which won’t be this year, because neither team is going to make it, but maybe in a few years? I’d like to see a future where Johnson puts the clamps on Jabroni Lames and Zion Williamson puts the clamps on Anthony Davis when the Lakers and Pelicans meet in the WCF. That sounds like a frickin’ sweet future to me.