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2017-18 New Orleans Pelicans preview: Fans are nervous, and they should be

This is a very important year for the franchise. Are the Pelicans up for the challenge?

Listen to the Pelicans preview podcast here!

This is a HUGE, HUGE year for the New Orleans Pelicans. DeMarcus Cousins is an impending free agent, the clock is ticking on Anthony Davis' long-term future with the franchise, and they need to win this year. Are they up for the challenge?

Oleh Kosel and Travis Tate from SB Nation's Pelicans site The Bird Writes join us to talk through that apprehension. Topics!

  • How well did the Davis/Cousins pairing actually work last year, and how can it work even better?
  • What are the chances this roster is constructed better around them than last year's?
  • How's the Jrue Holiday/Rajon Rondo pairing gonna work? Do the Pelicans have enough shooting around Davis and Cousins?
  • How much confidence do Pelicans fans have in the franchise's infrastructure — i.e. ownership, management, the medical staff, etc? (Answer: not much).
  • Does it bug Pelicans fans that so many are mentally trading Davis to other teams already?
  • If you had to reassign the original scary Pierre the Pelican to a job with the organization, what would it be?
  • Our favorite banana boat question, which lightened the mood a bit.
  • Then, a return to apprehension thanks to an extended conversation about the Saints, the Pelicans' unique place in the New Orleans sports hierarchy, and how it affects their roster decisions.

This podcast was part of the Limited Upside podcast’s 2017-18 offseason series previewing all 30 NBA teams with members of SB Nation’s team communities and other friends of the show. We’ve spent the last two-and-a-half months gauging the temperature of every fan base heading into what should be a terrific NBA season. There’s no better way to understand what makes NBA fans in each market tick.

We began these in August and counted down worst-to-first leading up to the season. Here’s how to listen to them all:

  1. Nets with Kristian Winfield and Nets Daily’s Anthony Puccio
  2. Lakers with Zito Madu and Silver Screen and Roll’s Anthony Irwin and Harrison Faigen
  3. Suns with Bright Side of the Sun’s Dave King and Evan Sidery
  4. 76ers with Tyler Tynes and Liberty Ballers’ Kyle Neubeck
  5. Knicks with Kristian Winfield and Posting and Toasting’s Seth Rosenthal
  6. Magic with Orlando Pinstriped Post’s Zach Oliver and Cory Hutson
  7. Kings with Kenny Carraway and Sactown Royalty’s Tony Xypteras
  8. Mavs with Tim Cato and Mavs Moneyball’s Kirk Henderson
  9. Wolves with Canis Hooups’ Eric Goldman and John Meyer
  10. Pelicans with The Bird Writes’ Oleh Kosel and Travis Tate
  11. Hornets with James Dator and At the Hive’s Nicklaus Denning
  12. Pistons with John Ketchum, Kofie Yeboah and Detroit Bad Boys’ Lazarus Jackson
  13. Nuggets with Denver Stiffs’ Adam Mares
  14. Heat with Kelly Cohen and Hot Hot Hoops’ Surya Fernandez
  15. Bulls with Ricky O’Donnell and Blog a Bull’s Jason Patt
  16. Pacers with Whitney Medworth and Indy Cornrows’ Caitlin Cooper
  17. Blazers with Blazers Edge’s Brian Freeman and Peter Sampson
  18. Bucks with Kevin McCauley and Brew Hoop’s Mitchell Maurer
  19. Hawks with Harry Lyles Jr. and Peachtree Hoops’ Brad Rowland
  20. Grizzlies with Grizzly Bear Blues’ Joe Mullinax
  21. Thunder with Eddie Maisonet and Welcome to Loud City’s Joshua Broom
  22. Thunder addendum! Carmelo Anthony trade emergency pod with Eddie Maisonet
  23. Wizards with Sports Illustrated’s Andrew Sharp and Bullets Forever’s Michael Sykes
  24. Jazz with SLC Dunk’s Mychal Lowman and James Hansen.
  25. Raptors with Raptors HQ’s Daniel Reynolds and freelance writer Seerat Sohi
  26. Cavaliers with Fear the Sword’s Chris Manning and MMA Fighting’s Eric Jackman
  27. Clippers with Clips Nation’s Lucas Hann and former L.A. video coordinator Mo Dakhil
  28. Celtics with Paul Flannery and Celtics Blog’s Nick Gelso
  29. Rockets with The Dream Shake’s Ethan Rothstein and Jeremy Brener
  30. Spurs with Pounding the Rock’s J.R. Wilco and Bruno Passos
  31. Warriors with Golden State of Mind’s Bram Kincheloe

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