Josh Hart is not happy with how the Los Angeles Lakers' trade for Anthony Davis went down.

The Lakers acquired Davis from the New Orleans Pelicans in June for Hart, Lonzo Ball, Brandon Ingram and three first-round picks, but apparently the organisation did not keep the players in the loop.

"I played my a*** off for the purple and gold," Hart wrote on Twitter.

"Played hurt and never had an excuse. I'm truly grateful to the Lakers organisation and I do understand the NBA is a business.

"But as a player you just want the courtesy of a phone call saying I got traded and not finding out on Twitter."

Hart did not appear to be upset with the trade at the time as he posted a photo to Instagram of him smiling immediately after the deal.

Clearly though, while he may have been happy to have been moved by the Lakers, he was not a fan of how the team handled the move.

Hart will now play alongside top overall pick Zion Williamson in New Orleans along with Ball and Ingram as well as star guard Jrue Holiday.

He may not have liked how he unceremoniously left Los Angeles, but he wanted to make sure people knew he did appreciate his time there.

"Let's make this clear. I loved my time in LA and loved my coaches, team=mates and training staff," Hart wrote.

"Got nothing but love and respect for the front office."

After acquiring Davis, the Lakers also inked Danny Green, Avery Bradley, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, JaVale McGee, Quinn Cook, Rajon Rondo, Alex Caruso and DeMarcus Cousins to new deals. Recently they added Dwight Howard as well.

Zion Williamson's fellow NBA rookies do not expect him to have the best career of the players in his draft class, with Cam Reddish coming out on top in the league's annual rookie survey.

Only five per cent of respondents in the survey believe Williamson will have the best career of the 2019 draftees.

Atlanta Hawks guard Reddish, meanwhile, received 19 per cent of the vote for the question.

Memphis Grizzlies guard Ja Morant (16 per cent) and Hawks forward De'Andre Hunter (11 per cent) also ranked higher than Williamson.

Three other players – Jaxson Hayes, who will play alongside Williamson for the New Orleans Pelicans, RJ Barrett and Coby White matched the small forward at five per cent.

Reddish, who was selected at number 10 by the Hawks, and Williamson were team-mates at Duke Blue Devils.

Williamson was the story of college basketball last season and averaged 22.6 points, along with 8.9 rebounds, while shooting 68 per cent from the field.

He was the consensus top prospect in the 2019 draft and the Pelicans chose him with the number one pick.

However, Williamson is favoured to win the Rookie of the Year among members of his draft class, as 35 per cent of respondents in the survey predicted he would take home the award.

Jrue Holiday is ready for the New Orleans Pelicans' next chapter.

New Orleans' roster underwent a major overhaul as the team selected former Duke star Zion Williamson with the number one pick and sent star Anthony Davis to the Los Angeles Lakers in exchange for Brandon Ingram, Lonzo Ball, Josh Hart and three first-round picks.

Holiday, who has been with the Pelicans since 2013-14, said Williamson has already made an impact.

"You can see just how much joy he's brought to the city," Holiday told The Athletic.

"I don't want to put too much on him because it can be hard to carry something like that at such a young age. I know he's a freakish athlete and a smart kid. If anyone can carry that burden, it would probably be him."

Holiday and Davis are close friends off the court, but the former said it would be "different" playing against the 26-year-old star.

"Obviously I grew up a Lakers fan, so it's cool to see [Davis] go there. But I still want to beat him – hands down," Holiday said.

"It's going to be different seeing him on the other side because we know each other so well. But he knows when we play [the Lakers], it's going to be a battle. I'm going to want that win just as badly as he does."

Holiday, 29, averaged a career-high 21.2 points – along with 7.7 assists – while shooting 47.2 per cent from the field last season. He also added 5.0 rebounds and 1.6 steals per game.

"I want to be the ultimate professional and the best team-mate,"  Holiday said. "When people talk about me, I want them to say, 'Jrue can really hoop.' That's it. I'm here to play basketball. I'm here to help my team-mates. I just want to be known as a good basketball player. Obviously, winning is a big part of that and I want to be known as a winner. That's the ultimate goal."

The Pelicans signed veterans Derrick Favors and JJ Redick this offseason.

David Griffin wants people to know he maintains a "positive relationship" with LeBron James.

Griffin received scrutiny after comments regarding the Los Angeles Lakers and former Cleveland Cavaliers star were published in a recent Sports Illustrated story.

Griffin – who spent nearly a decade as an executive in Cleveland's organisation before joining the New Orleans Pelicans – said he was "miserable" during his time with the Cavaliers.

His comments shocked James, according to ESPN, and Griffin said on Friday his feelings were unrelated to the NBA superstar.

"The fact that there was so much scrutiny in everything that we did, when I was speaking about being uncomfortable and being miserable, it was my inability to deal with that media scrutiny," Griffin told ESPN.

"It wasn't the man himself. It was everything that came with a team led by LeBron James. It had nothing to do with being miserable with LeBron. We had and have a very positive relationship."

Griffin thought the article was going to focus on New Orleans as he helped rebuild the roster by sending Anthony Davis to the Lakers in exchange for Josh Hart, Lonzo Ball, Brandon Ingram and three first-round picks as well as the addition of Derrick Favors and JJ Redick and former Duke star Zion Williamson with the top pick in the 2019 draft.

Zion Williamson is planning on spending his entire career with the New Orleans Pelicans.

The Pelicans forward was selected with the first overall pick in the 2019 NBA Draft after a stunning freshman year at Duke and many expect him to blossom into a superstar.

It has been suggested Williamson will only spend a few seasons with New Orleans before leaving to sign with a major market for his prime years.

However, Williamson wants to emulate Los Angeles Lakers icon Kobe Bryant and Dallas Mavericks legend Dirk Nowitzki by sticking with one franchise.

"I'm gonna try to give you the best answer I can give. Personally, I've always told myself I want to stay with one team," Williamson told Complex. 

"Growing up, I loved what Kobe did and Dirk did, and I think if anybody's a Michael Jordan fan, they kinda erase the Wizards thing. He still did very well there, but at the end of the day, I don't think people look at it from the business point of view.

"Some people want to stay with one team but they get traded. My intentions are to stay with the Pelicans my whole career, but if something happens, I wouldn't leave because I hate the place. It's just the business."

Williamson believes New Orleans can be a championship contender in 2019-20 despite the fact the team missed last year's playoffs.

The Pelicans brought in a talented rookie class in 2019 by securing first-round picks in Williamson, Jaxson Hayes and Nickeil Alexander-Walker. They also sent Anthony Davis to the Lakers for a massive haul that included Lonzo Ball, Brandon Ingram, Josh Hart and multiple future first-rounders.

"Me being confident in my team-mates, I would say I think the ceiling is [a] championship," Williamson said.

"But I have to be realistic about this. I have high expectations for us, but you gotta see how we're gonna work. I think we are going to work, but it does take time to adjust to each player — knowing what they like to do, finding out their tendencies.

"So, I think the quicker we find out those things, I think we have a very high ceiling."

Zion Williamson has been a pro for one month and is already joining the elite.

On Tuesday, the NBA's top overall draft pick announced a shoe deal with Nike's Jordan Brand.

The New Orleans Pelicans forward follows the likes of Russell Westbrook, Jayson Tatum, Blake Griffin and Chris Paul in signing with the brand.

"Zion's incredible determination, character and play are inspiring," Michael Jordan said in a release. "He's an essential part of the new talent that will help lead the brand into the future.

"He told us he would 'shock the world' and asked us to believe him. We do."

"I feel incredibly blessed to be a part of the Jordan Brand family," Williamson said. "Since I was a kid, I dreamed of making it to the league and having the type of impact on the game Michael Jordan had and continues to have today.

"He was one of those special athletes I looked up to and I really can't express how happy and excited I am for this journey."

Williamson, who turned 19 earlier this month, was selected first overall by New Orleans in June's draft.

He averaged 22.6 points, 8.9 rebounds, 2.1 assists, 2.1 steals and 1.8 blocks per game in his lone college season at Duke.

Brandon Ingram is almost ready to get back on the court with his new team the New Orleans Pelicans.

Speaking on Tuesday during formal introductions following his trade from the Los Angeles Lakers, the Pelicans forward revealed he is "pretty close" to resuming basketball workouts.

Ingram continues to recover from surgery he underwent in March to address a blood clot in his right arm.

After being moved as part of a package deal for Anthony Davis, Ingram did not give a specific timeline for his return but confirmed he has worked on his shooting form while also participating in ball-handling and passing drills.

The injury was potentially career-threatening, as former Miami Heat forward Chris Bosh was forced to retire with a similar condition. 

Ingram missed two games with a shoulder problem before being diagnosed with the blood clot and battled a variety of other ailments last season, including lingering ankle pain.

The 21-year-old averaged 18.3 points, 3.0 assists and 5.1 rebounds in 52 Lakers games last season.

David Griffin saw the future of the New Orleans Pelicans in a brief moment during NBA Summer League practice, and the executive vice president of basketball operations said things look "crazy" good.

Griffin introduced recruits Lonzo Ball, Brandon Ingram and Josh Hart after a trade with the Los Angeles Lakers centred on Anthony Davis, and Derrick Favors – acquired from the Utah Jazz.

Coupled with first pick Zion Williamson and eighth selection Jaxson Hayes, along with returning guard Jrue Holiday, and the Pelicans are expected to be one of the most-improved teams in the NBA in 2019-20.

Griffin is thrilled with what he has seen so far, like that special moment in a recent Summer League practice.

"There was a moment where Jaxson Hayes was out running the floor in a practice with Zion on the other side, and they were sort of just messing around … and the speed those guys have just at a trot is mind-numbing," Griffin told reporters on Tuesday. "Alvin and I looked at it and we thought, 'Man with those guys on the wing, and with Lonzo at the point, what we'll be able to do speed-wise is crazy'."

That is crazy in a good way for the Pelicans, unlike last season's 33-49 craziness, lowlighted by the persistent trade rumours surrounding Davis.

Griffin said he is excited all the acquisitions come from winning backgrounds, adding: "We want to surround ourselves with people that have won championships on any level, because it's a frequency you learn to tune to. We're deep with selfless winners."

Former Lakers guard Ball welcomes the move to New Orleans, saying: "It's a fresh start. It's a restart. … I know the media is not like it was in LA, but I know the fans are great and come out and support [us]."

Ball added: "I'm getting back to playing the style I've been playing my whole life, I'm very comfortable in a high uptempo offense like coach Gentry has."

The Pelicans will enter this season with high expectations and playing under a microscope with Williamson on display. But Griffin wants the players to believe anything is possible.

"Look at what the NBA has become, and the way teams are built," Griffin said. "You can't dream big enough in this league. I think I want everyone's approach to this to be, 'Why not us?'"

Los Angeles Lakers star Anthony Davis does not have any regrets about his trade request and departure from the New Orleans Pelicans. 

Davis will team up with Lakers superstar LeBron James in 2019-20 after finally arriving from the Pelicans in a blockbuster trade.

A six-time All-Star, Davis requested a trade away from New Orleans and the Pelicans attempted to deal him before February's deadline but failed.

When asked if he wished he did it any differently, Davis told ESPN: "No. I wish I did it the way I did it."

"I'm a person who's very upfront and honest," he said. "You know, I want to tell you what it is. I love the city of New Orleans, but from a professional standpoint and occupation in basketball, I felt like it was time for me to move on.

"I see a lot of people that say 'wait' or 'you should have did it this way, that way.' But for me, I've been in the league long enough. I'm a grown man. I know what I want. And so I thought doing it at that time was definitely going to be beneficial for myself and for the organisation to get the best package available, so that way the organisation is still set."

Davis went on to say he wanted to have complete control over his situation and did not want other people's opinions to affect his career.

"Because I allowed people to tell me what to do and advise me to do this or that," the 26-year-old added. "And now, by me being able to take control of my career, any decision that I make, you know — I can sleep at night. I'm good.

"That was the biggest thing for me. I was having a lot of regrets and thinking, I should have done it my way. Or, I should have done this differently. But now it's like, when I do it my way — I'm able to sleep at night and not care what other people's opinions are."

Since the addition of Davis, the Lakers have made big changes to their roster during free agency to complement both him and James.

Davis revealed Lakers general manager Rob Pelinka called "every 30 to 45 minutes" during the free-agency period to get his input on players.

"Sometimes I had to tell him, like, 'Rob, I'm in the movies.' He'd be like, 'All right, well, call me as soon as you get out,'" Davis said. "But we're trying to put the best team around us, and I think he did a great job of doing it."

Zion Williamson insists his absence from the New Orleans Pelicans NBA Summer League schedule is precautionary.

The Pelicans announced Williamson sustained a knee-to-knee hit with an opponent during Friday's 80-74 win against the New York Knicks that would rule him out of their remaining games in Las Vegas.

A statement said the number one overall draft pick would "move forward from this incident without issue" and Williamson seemed to confirm as much when he spoke to reporters after his new team-mates overcame the Chicago Bulls 109-72.

"It was more precautionary," he said.

"Now I just hone my craft and get ready for the season.

"It's very frustrating. You know me, I'm a competitor. Whenever I can play, I just want to play."

Despite being restricted to nine minutes on court against the Knicks, it was an experience the 19-year-old relished.

"The energy was high and it was actually my first taste of playing against NBA players, so it was great," Williamson added.

The Pelicans wrap up their Las Vegas commitments on Wednesday when they face the Cleveland Cavaliers.

 

Star New Orleans Pelicans rookie Zion Williamson will miss the rest of NBA Summer League as a precaution.

The number one overall draft pick sustained a knee-to-knee hit with an opponent during Friday's opening game against the New York Knicks and did not return after the first half.

The Pelicans have subsequently announced Williamson will sit out of their remaining fixtures in Las Vegas.

"Zion will move forward from this incident without issue," executive vice president David Griffin said in a statement.

"However, in an abundance of caution, we have made the determination that he will not appear in game action for the remainder of the NBA Summer League.

"He will continue to take part in training and conditioning with our performance team."

Williamson showcased his ability to make the same highlight-reel plays he made at Duke against the Knicks during his limited playing time, but nobody else in the contest made it to the final buzzer either.

The matchup between New York and New Orleans was postponed with just under eight minutes remaining in the fourth quarter after a nearby earthquake caused a disturbance.

The Pelicans were leading 80-74 at the time and were ultimately declared the winners.

 

Zion Williamson and RJ Barrett were pitted against each other in the NBA Summer League on Friday.

Former team-mates and the number one and three overall draft picks respectively, Williamson and the New Orleans Pelicans faced Barrett and the New York Knicks.

However, Williamson's debut was cut short. The rookie did not play in the second half of the game – which was eventually suspended due to an earthquake – after taking knee-to-knee contact, according to the team.

Before Williamson left, he and Barrett showed off a number of highlight-reel worthy plays that followed them from college into the league.  

While expectations should not be too high – it is Summer League after all – soon after tip-off, Williamson impressed.

It did not take long for Barrett to show off his skills, either. He hit a long three-pointer for his first points.

But it continued to be Williamson's show. He dropped 10 points in the first quarter.

However, it was not all pretty. Williamson did show some growing pains and struggled from three-point range. Mitchell Robinson was giving him the most trouble, blocking several of Williamson's shots. 

Williamson finished with 11 points on four-for-nine shooting from the field and 0 for two from long distance before his early exit.

An earthquake interrupted play as the NBA Summer League began in Las Vegas on Friday.

During the highly anticipated New Orleans Pelicans-New York Knicks matchup, a 6.9 magnitude earthquake occurred in Ridgecrest, California – about 140 miles from Las Vegas.

A 6.4 magnitude quake struck California on July 4.

The impact was felt during the game.

The Pelicans were leading 80-74 when play was stopped.

Zion Williamson is enjoying the perks of playing in the NBA.

The New Orleans Pelicans star marvelled about the professional game's spacing and thinks it could be beneficial for him moving forward.

"I do like the spacing a lot more," Williamson told NBA.com on Tuesday. "[Defenders] can't really [just] stand in the paint, so it gives me a lot more room to operate.

"The three-point line does create more spacing, because everybody can shoot. You can't really help off too much, otherwise it's an open three. I love the spacing. It's almost like a dream come true for me. Because every time I attack the basket, there is space for me."

Williamson was selected with the top pick in the 2019 NBA Draft and was a nightmare for opposing defenses during his freshman season at Duke. The 6-7 forward averaged 22.6 points and 8.9 rebounds per game while shooting an impressive 68 per cent from the field during his lone year with the Blue Devils.

Although he was named Naismith National College Player of the Year in 2018-19, he feels some parts of his game are still underrated.

"I feel like I don't get enough credit for my low-post game," Williamson said. "I can attack off the wing, I can attack from up top, but in college it's a little different, because everyone can help over [defensively]. In the NBA, they can help over, but not really [as much], so I'm able to show more of my skill."

Williamson will play in his first game with the Pelicans on Friday in a summer league matchup against the New York Knicks in Las Vegas, Nevada. He will face off against his college team-mate and friend RJ Barrett, who was taken third overall in this year's draft.

Enes Kanter is making headlines for saying something controversial once again, this time about Zion Williamson.

The Portland Trail Blazers center has never been shy about expressing his views and unleashed his latest hot take during a stop on the Herd with Colin Cowherd on Wednesday.

Kanter played down the talent of Williamson, who was taken with the top pick in the 2019 NBA Draft by the New Orleans Pelicans.

"I like Zion Williamson," Cowherd tells Kanter. "He can pass, he's big, he's strong. I think he's got a magnetism – you think he's overrated."

"I kind of feel like he's overhyped," Kanter responded. "I feel like he's Julius Randle with hops."

Randle is a solid player in his own right. He had an excellent year for the Pelicans in 2018-19, putting up career-highs in points per game (21.4) and three-point percentage (34) to go along with 8.6 rebounds and 3.6 assists. 

Randle had a monster game when Kanter and the Trail Blazers came to town with a stat-line of 45 points, 11 rebounds, six assists, and three blocks. 

He was not having any of it, using Twitter to remind Kanter of his dominant performance and telling him to "relax bro".

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