David Griffin Believes Anthony Davis Could Stay with Pelicans Amid Trade Rumors

Adam Wells@adamwells1985Featured ColumnistApril 17, 2019

New Orleans Pelicans' Anthony Davis walks on the court during an NBA basketball game against the Dallas Mavericks in Dallas, Monday, March 18, 2019. (AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez)
Tony Gutierrez/Associated Press

Even though Anthony Davis appeared to be checked out as the 2018-19 season came to a close, the New Orleans Pelicans aren't shutting the door on bringing their All-Star center back.  

During his introductory press conference Wednesday, David Griffin, New Orleans' new executive vice president of basketball operations, expressed optimism about Davis remaining with the team after talking to Davis' agent, Rich Paul. 

"We have a long successful history with Klutch Sports," Griffin told reporters. "Rich Paul and I have spoke about Anthony. We are both excited about what we could potentially build here. ... Rich Paul and I were part of succeeding. They will understand when I say this, 'You are either all the way or all the way out.'"

Per Andrew Lopez of the Times-Picayune, Griffin has set up a time soon to speak with Davis directly. 

Davis' choice of attire to the Pelicans' season finale against the Golden State Warriors led to speculation that he was saying a tongue-in-cheek farewell to the organization:

The T-shirt came after Davis and the Pelicans struggled to navigate their relationship down the stretch in the wake of his trade request in January. He averaged 22 minutes per contest in 15 games after the All-Star break and didn't play after a March 24 loss against the Houston Rockets

Davis has one more guaranteed season on his contract for $27.093 million, per Spotrac.

Griffin is in charge of rebuilding New Orleans' roster. He previously served as general manager of the Cleveland Cavaliers from 2014-17. The 45-year-old negotiated the deal with Paul that brought LeBron James back to the Cavs. 

The Pelicans have won one postseason series in two playoff appearances in Davis' seven NBA seasons. Their 33-49 record in 2018-19 was tied with the Dallas Mavericks and Memphis Grizzlies for worst in the Southwest Division. 

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