New Orleans Pelicans Roster
- Western Southwest
- Smoothie King Center
Free agent guard Josh Hart is signing a three-year, $38 million deal to remain in New Orleans with the Pelicans. Last season, Hart averaged 9.2 points per game on 43.9 percent shooting, with 8.0 rebounds and 2.3 assists as well. He also shot 32.6 percent from three, and 77.5 percent from the free throw line. Hart played in 47 games but started just four of those. Hart could be in line for more minutes at small forward this season due to the overabundance of guards in New Orleans. Most fantasy managers should pass on drafting Hart, but in deeper leagues, he could be a key contributor if he is given a bigger role on the team, making him an intriguing late-round pick.
Center Willy Hernangomez agreed to a three-year deal to remain with the Pelicans. The 2015 second-round draft pick has played in New York and Charlotte throughout his career before ending up in New Orleans. The 27-year-old wasn't a consistent fantasy option last season, but throughout his 12 games in the starting lineup, he averaged a double-double by way of 11.5 points and 10.8 rebounds. While Hernangomez remains behind Jonas Valanciunas and Jaxson Hayes on the depth chart, his ceiling will get much higher if he lands a consistent role at some point during the year.
Guard Tomas Satoransky is heading to the Pelicans after he was included in a deal that sent Lonzo Ball to Chicago. The 29-year-old has a chance to see an uptick in production in New Orleans after he's had flashes of inconsistent efficiency over the years. He averaged 9.3 points, 6.1 assists, and 1.2 steals throughout 18 starts during the 2020-21 campaign, but if given a more prominent role in his new home, he has the potential to be a sneaky fantasy option with a higher ceiling than most realize.
New Orleans extended a qualifying offer to guard Josh Hart, making him a restricted free agent. The price ranger was around $5.2 million, and it would allow the Pelicans to match offers from other clubs when negotiations begin on August 2. The 26-year-old was one of the most effective options in the league off the bench last season, finishing with 9.2 points, 8.0 rebounds, and 2.3 assists. Hart has had issues staying healthy over the years, and he's had some rough nights from a shooting standpoint. However, if he can receive a more prominent role moving ahead, he has the potential to be an everyday fantasy option.
The Grizzlies have traded center Jonas Valanciunas and the 17th overall pick in Thursday's NBA Draft to the Pelicans. In exchange, New Orleans will send Steven Adams, Eric Bledsoe, and the 2021 10th overall pick, among other selections. The move creates cap space for New Orleans and allows the team to offload the hefty salaries of Bledsoe and Adams. While Valanciunas has been in the league for 10 seasons, the former Raptor had a fantastic 2020-21 campaign, finishing by averaging 17.1 points and 12.5 boards in only 28 minutes per game. While the 29-year-old could regress when the new season begins in October, especially playing alongside Brandon Ingram and Zion Williamson, he is still worth a late-round grab in fantasy drafts for those looking for a big man with double-double upside.