(AP) — The New Orleans Pelicans hope to build on the momentum from a Friday victory when they begin a three-game road trip on Saturday against the Atlanta Hawks.
The Pelicans defeated the Golden State Warriors 114-105 — their lone home game sandwiched between three-game road swings.
The Hawks have not played since earning a 112-99 road win over the New York Knicks on Wednesday.
New Orleans took advantage of the short-handed Warriors, who were without four starters and handed the defending NBA champions their sixth straight road defeat. The Pelicans got Brandon Ingram back from a concussion that cost him four games, and he finished with 26 points, five rebounds and five assists.
“I’m still trying to get back in the flow,” said Ingram, who is averaging 23.0 points, 5.5 rebounds and 4.3 assists. “Timing was a little off and my decision-making was a little slow. I wasn’t great at all. The last three or four days I was able to get back in the gym, go through my protocols and get my feel.”
Larry Nance Jr. came off the New Orleans bench to score a season-high 20 points and grab eight rebounds against the Warriors. His career high of 23 points came against the Hawks in 2020.
“Larry has been big for us since last year in the playoffs,” Ingram said. “He’s starting to get his legs under him. You can see the confidence behind him. I’ve been impressed what he’s been doing.”
The Pelicans also got Herbert Jones back on Friday, and he had four points and three steals. Jones missed four games with a hyperextended right knee.
Atlanta will keep a close watch on guard Trae Young, who briefly exited the game with the Knicks due to a scratched left eye.
“I think I’ll be able to play through it,” Young said. “It’s more just letting the swelling go down, but I’ll be able to play through it. Thankfully I get a couple days for it to kind of get better. I’ll probably wear goggles or glasses for some games, but it will be all right.”
Young is just eager to be on the court.
“I love to play,” he said. “Anytime I’m able to do that, I’m going to go out and try my best and play. Unless I literally cannot play, I’m not going to let my teammates down and sit out because I know I can be a presence on the floor, even if I’m just standing and getting everyone involved.”
Young leads the team with averages of 27.5 points and 9.4 assists. Dejounte Murray is putting up 22.0 points and 7.8 assists per game and had a career-high 36 points at New York. John Collins is averaging 13.5 points and 10.3 rebounds and leads the team with five double-doubles.
The Hawks, who haven’t played at home since Oct. 23, are coming off a 3-2 road trip.
New Orleans and Atlanta split two games last year, each winning on the other’s home court.
Murray produced two triple-doubles against the Pelicans last season as a member of the San Antonio Spurs — 10 points, 12 rebounds and 10 assists on Dec. 12 and 15, 11 and 13, respectively, on March 26.
–Field Level Media