Brian Roberts was surprisingly productive for the Pelicans last year (when they were still called the Hornets), especially in the latter part of the season.
He was a capable scorer from the guard position, and was regularly the one name that would jump out at you when combing through the morning’s box scores late in the year when he was playing heavy minutes in the rotation.
But his contract isn’t guaranteed for next season, so Roberts has been trying to continue to make an impact with the team’s Summer League squad in Las Vegas. He hopes what he’s done has been enough to once again be added to the roster.
From John Reid of NOLA.com:
Backup point guard Brian Roberts hopes he did enough in summer league for the New Orleans Pelicans to pick up the option on his contract for this upcoming season that could increase his salary to $788,872 from last season’s $473,604.
“I thought I played pretty well,’’ Roberts said. “There were times when I didn’t play as well as I wanted to, but overall I thought I gave the effort when I was out there. Mainly, I wanted to show that I could run the team and get guys in the right positions.’’
He showed that much last season.
The problem for Roberts is the high volume of quality guards that the Pelicans brought to the team in the offseason. Tyreke Evans and Jrue Holiday are now in the fold, and let’s not forget about Eric Gordon, who is expected to be healthy enough to contribute meaningful minutes this season.
Add in the fact that Austin Rivers seems healthy and much-improved since suffering a broken hand that ultimately gave Roberts his chance, and despite his relative value, it may be tough for Roberts to catch on in New Orleans for a second straight season.