Pelicans make NBA Summer League Tournament

LAS VEGAS, NEVADA - JULY 06: Zion Williamson (C) #1 of the New Orleans Pelicans looks on from the bench as his team takes on the Washington Wizards during the 2019 NBA Summer League at the Thomas & Mack Center on July 6, 2019 in Las Vegas, Nevada. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

Las Vegas, Nev. — After going 3-1 in their first four games of NBA Summer League, the New Orleans Pelicans qualified for the single-elimination tournament part of the summer session.

The Pelicans are the 4-seed, and are set to take-on the 5th-seeded Miami Heat Saturday at 5:30 p.m. CT in the quarterfinals. If they win that, they’d advance to the semifinals against the winner of the 8th-seeded Grizzlies and top-seeded Celtics. The other half of the bracket features the Nets, Pistons, Mavericks and Timberwolves, rounding-out the top 8 teams that advanced from the preliminary round this past week.

The Pelicans got past the Knicks, Bulls and Cavaliers but lost to the Wizards in those first four games, and while Zion Williamson only played 9 minutes in that first game against the Knicks, their other 2019 first round draft picks stepped-up in a huge way Monday and Wednesday. Jaxson Hayes, the 8th overall pick, had a combined 41 points in those last two games and plenty of dunks to make the highlight reel. Nickeil Alexander-Walker, the 17th overall pick, did even better, with a combined 49 points and 14 assists in those two games. LSU’s undrafted rookie, Kavell Bigby-Williams has also had significant contributions in the Pelicans preliminary games, with two double-doubles. In those first four games, he’s averaging 11 points, 9 rebounds in an average of 19 minutes of playing time and has shot 17-25 from the floor.

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