The Pelicans are six games and four teams out of playoff position.
Insurmountable? Not technically.
But their coach is publicly throwing in the towel.
Justin Verrier of ESPN:
It’s rare to hear a coach give up like this, but Gentry was obviously frustrated after New Orleans lost to the Rockets – a team that sat two starters to give them a chance to bicker and drew a foul by jumping on a Pelican’s back.
Perhaps, Gentry was also trying to motivate his team. Even if frustration were his primary motivation for his comments in the moment, he can always spin it as motivation after the fact.
Unfortunately for the Pelicans, Gentry’s assessment is pretty close to reality. ESPN gives them just a 0.4% chance of making the playoffs, and Basketball-Reference pegs New Orleans’ odds at 0.6%. Not only would the Pelicans have to play better than they have all season, they’d have to hope nobody just above them in the standings also gets hot.