When the NBA season was suspended on March 11th, the New Orleans Pelicans sights were set on securing the 8th seed in the Western Conference. Now, the only focus is staying healthy in the midst of the Coronavirus pandemic. Despite a number of NBA players testing positive around the association, no Pelicans are on that list.
On March 16th, Gayle Benson personally donated $1 million to create the Gayle Benson Community Assistance Fund in response to the Coronavirus pandemic. Since then she has stayed deeply in touch with the community, including the Saints and Pelicans front offices. On Wednesday, Benson went on the New Orleans Pelicans Podcast to discuss several topics, including the Pelicans current state during the NBA suspended season.
Benson said, “I’m so confident the Pelicans are staying ready. We owe this to our fans and we’re ready to deliver. They’re a young team, they’re getting healthy and before this virus started we were getting to the 8th seed. I’m in daily contact with David and Alvin and they’re also working remotely. I’m hoping we can continue this roll that we were on earlier. You know both teams are working so hard to deliver a successful season and I’m so proud of all of them.”
One Pelican who took early action in giving back was 19 year old rookie Zion Williamson. Williamson, announcing on his Instagram that he would pay the salaries of Smoothie King Center workers for 30 days following the halt to their season.
Benson, “You know that is such an incredible gesture on his part. It just shows you his background and his family. I’m so honored to have him working with us he is such an incredible young man. All of our players are incredible people, but him stepping up like that really took my breath away. It’s such a sweet, kind gesture on his part and I’m just so proud that he thought of our team.”
To hear the complete interview, click here