During the 2018-19 NBA season, All-Star center Anthony Davis made one of the biggest headlines when he demanded a trade from the New Orleans Pelicans. With the help of his representative, Rich Paul of Klutch Sports Group, Davis informed the Pelicans that he had no intention of signing a contract extension that they planned to offer in the 2019 NBA offseason and wanted to be traded to a team where he can consistently win and contend for the NBA championship.
The Pelicans granted Anthony Davis’ trade request in June by sending him to the Los Angeles Lakers in exchange for Brandon Ingram, Lonzo Ball, Josh Hart, and multiple first-round picks. In a recent interview with Jackie MacMullan of ESPN, Pelicans head coach Alvin Gentry discussed several topics, including Davis’ departure from New Orleans. Gentry said that he wasn’t surprised at all when Davis expressed his desire to leave the Pelicans in January.
Coach Alvin Gentry said that he knew Anthony Davis would demand a trade from the Pelicans from the time he fired longtime agent Thad Foucher and replaced him with Rich Paul of Klutch Sports as his new representative.
“I’m a realist,” Gentry said. “When Anthony signed with Klutch Sports, I knew what was going to happen. They told me, ‘No, we’re not trying to get him traded,’ but we all realized it was just a matter of time. I understand that some players feel the need to move on. With Anthony, it could have and should have been handled differently. If it was, I would have been OK with the situation.”
Frank Vogel says Anthony Davis will be a “focal point” of everything the Lakers want to do on both ends of the floor because he thinks Davis is “one of the best players in the league” on offense and defense. https://t.co/QyytxE09Gh pic.twitter.com/1lZb7eAIQW
— Silver Screen & Roll (@LakersSBN) August 4, 2019
The departure of Anthony Davis has undeniably broken the hearts of Pelicans fans, especially those people who believed that he would be the first player that would bring an NBA championship to New Orleans. However, despite losing the face of the franchise this summer, the future still looks bright for the Pelicans.
In the blockbuster deal that sent Davis to the Lakers, the Pelicans received three young and promising talents — Brandon Ingram, Lonzo Ball, and Josh Hart — that would help Zion Williamson, the No. 1 overall pick in the 2019 NBA Draft, bring the team back to title contention.
Coach Alvin Gentry is happy with the trade assets they got from trading Anthony Davis, but if he had the ability to turn back time, he hopes that the All-Star would have handled the situation differently. Instead of publicly expressing his desire to be traded, Gentry believes that Davis should have talked to the Pelicans privately, which could have prevented the toxic environment that built up in New Orleans last season.