New Orleans have had a rough start to their 2021-22 NBA campaign, winning only one of their seven games. They have had many close losses this season as the team awaits the return of star forward Zion Williamson.
On the other side of the floor are the Phoenix Suns, who are 2-3 to start the season. Phoenix have started out the season a bit slower than some might have expected. However, they will look to secure a victory against the Pelicans, and get back to .500 on the year.
Fixture: New Orleans Pelicans vs Phoenix Suns | NBA Regular Season 2021-22.
Date & Time: Tuesday, November 2nd; 10:00 PM ET (Wednesday, November 3rd; 7:30 AM IST).
Venue: Footprint Center, Phoenix, AZ.
New Orleans Pelicans Preview
The New Orleans Pelicans are going to need to find a way to bring a balanced offensive punch on Tuesday against the Phoenix Suns. As of now, star forward Brandon Ingram remains questionable for the game, as he is dealing with a hip contusion.
If Ingram is unable to go, expect the team to look to their backcourt to provide a consistent balance of offensive firepower. Two players who should expect plenty of touches offensively for the Pelicans are Devonte' Graham and Nickeil Alexander-Walker. Another important piece to the puzzle will be Josh Hart, who should see some time in many positions if Ingram is out.
New Orleans, meanwhile, are coming off a tough loss at home last Saturday against the New York Knicks. If they wish to pull of an upset against the Phoenix Suns, their backcourt will have to fire on all cylinders. Expect New Orleans big man Jonas Valanciunas to be a big part of their game plan.
Key Player - Jonas Valanciunas
The New Orleans Pelicans are going to lean on their backcourt to bring a consistent offensive punch. In that regard, no player has been as impressive for the Pelicans this year than Jonas Valanciunas.
After coming over via trade from the Memphis Grizzlies, Valanciunas has thrived for the Pelicans this season. He will go up against Deandre Ayton in this match, which should be a sensational showdown between two versatile centers.
New Orleans Pelicans Predicted Lineup
G - Devonte' Graham; G - Nickeil Alexander-Walker; F - Josh Hart; F - Herbert Jones; C - Jonas Valanciunas.
Phoenix Suns Preview
The Phoenix Suns became the talk of the basketball world last year, thanks to their impressive run to the NBA Finals. Although they lost to the Milwaukee Bucks, it's interesting to see how the Suns would perform this season.
It's been a slower start to the season for them than most would have expected. The Suns are 2-3 ahead of Tuesday's showdown against the New Orleans Pelicans. After an impressive 101-92 win over the surging Cleveland Cavaliers, the Suns will look to down the Pelicans and string together a new winning streak.
It's going to be interesting to monitor their injury report before this game. Phoenix Suns big man Deandre Ayton left the game against the Cavaliers early with a reported leg contusion. The Suns will need Ayton for this one, as Pelicans big man Jonas Valanciunas has been sensational this season.
Key Player - Devin Booker
There's no doubt the Phoenix Suns are at their best when superstar guard Devin Booker is firing on all cylinders. So far this year, Booker has put up some respectable numbers.
He's currently averaging 22.6 points per game while shooting at 41.6% from the field. A notable development with Booker's start to the season has been his struggle to get his three-point shot to come around.
Booker is shooting 28.6% from downtown. It seems as if it's only a matter of time before he starts to pair together impressive performances. A home showdown against the Pelicans could be just the time for Booker to find his groove.
Phoenix Suns Predicted Lineup
G - Chris Paul; G - Devin Booker; F - Mikal Bridges; F - Jae Crowder; C - Deandre Ayton.
Pelicans vs Suns Match Prediction
The Phoenix Suns are going to come into this game determined to get back to .500 on the year.
It's going to be interesting to monitor both team's injury reports, as they have some key players who could be game-time decisions. The Pelicans continue to be a bit shorthanded, especially with star forward Zion Williamson still out. So the Suns should pull out the victory in this one, as they will be determined to get back on the right track.
Where to watch Pelicans vs Suns?
Local coverage of the game will be provided by Bally Sports Arizona and nationally on TNT. The game can also be live-streamed via NBA League Pass.
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