Sometimes a change of scenery is all a player needs.
Tyreke Evans could be that guy. Following his Rookie of the Year campaign his improvement stalled out in Sacramento, then the team went through a series of changes and Evans never seemed to have a set role. Everything was in flux, and while Evans’ shooting percentages went up last season it wasn’t because of the stability with the Sacramento Kings. It was in spite of it.
So what is his role going to be in New Orleans, where he signed a four-year $44 million deal? That remains to be seen as well — he could be a starter at the three, he could be the sixth man coming in to provide scoring punch off the bench at the two guard.
“If that’s what Coach [Monty Williams] is comfortable with doing, I’ll add firepower to the second unit and help build leads.”
The more likely scenario is he starts at the three, with Jrue Holiday at the one and Eric Gordon at the two. Which leads to the question of how Evan fits at the three, particularly on the defensive end.
“I know small forward well enough to understand it,” he said. “A lot of it is just about being at the right spot. It’s a lot different from having the ball all the time. I’d definitely be comfortable with it if it came down to it….
“I can definitely defend at the 3, from Carmelo to LeBron and Durant,” Evans said. “It won’t be easy, but I could do the job.”
Williams has a lot of versatility in his made-over roster and it’s likely going to take some time into the regular season for him to settle on a rotation that works for him and the team. That versatility can be great for creating favorable matchups, but it takes time with the same players together on the roster. The Pelicans are young, they have that time, but it could make the start of this season a little shaky.
At least Evans and some of the other players have the right attitude about it.