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REPORT: Will Pelicans owner Gayle Benson trade Anthony Davis to the Lakers? “Over my dead body.”

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(Photo via Getty Images)

When Anthony Davis demanded a trade from the New Orleans Pelicans back in January, the Los Angeles Lakers immediately jumped out as a frontrunner to land the former Wildcat.

At the time, the connections made sense. Davis has reportedly been friends with Lakers star LeBron James for several years now, both parties share the same agent, and each team has trade pieces that the other would likely be interested in. For the Lakers, they can pair Davis and James together to give the franchise two of the top five players in the league. For the Pelicans, a mix of young talent in Brandon Ingram, Lonzo Ball, Kyle Kuzma, and draft picks, giving them a solid jump to their rebuild.

While it seemed to be a solid trade match, the Pelicans refused to entertain any trade offers from Los Angeles throughout the season and at the deadline. The strong-arm tactics used by former team president Magic Johnson, general manager Rob Pelinka, and Anthony Davis’ agent, Rich Paul, reportedly rubbed the team the wrong way and they had no interest in giving the Lakers the superstar they were looking for.

When the Lakers received the No. 4 pick at the NBA Draft Lottery this past week, however, most assumed that prized piece added to the team’s assets would give the Pelicans no choice but to reevaluate their stance on Los Angeles as a potential trade partner. Under newly-hired general manager David Griffin, they’d have to accept the trade offer they felt was best overall, regardless of franchise, right?

Well, not exactly.

According to veteran journalist Jackie MacMullen, New Orleans won’t be backing off from their stance on the issue. In fact, she says there is “scuttlebutt” that owner Gayle Benson will only trade Davis to the Lakers “over [her] dead body.”

“We have been told, I think, through channels — most of us have heard this same scuttlebutt,” MacMullen said on the Hoop Collective podcast with NBA insider Brian Windhorst, “that Gayle Benson has basically told [Anthony Davis], ‘To the Lakers, over my dead body.’”

WDSU reporter Fletcher Mackel talked to Benson, who refuted the phrasing of the report, saying it was “completely untrue” and “absurd” that she wouldn’t look at the best available option for her franchise.

That being said, MacMullen is known as one of the most well-connected reporters in the NBA and is not known for discussing rumors and speculation unless she is certain there is at least some bit of truth to them. With all of the tension during trade discussions – or lack thereof – this season, it’d be silly to think the New Orleans front office is ecstatic about the opportunity to speak with the Lakers again.

While the ultimate goal for David Griffin is to convince Davis to rethink his trade request and play with Zion Williamson in New Orleans moving forward, Shams Charania of The Athletic has already reported that the former Wildcat isn’t backing down.

According to Steve Bulpett of the Boston Herald, if the Pelicans can’t convince Davis to return, they will reach out to the Celtics about a potential deal. With trade assets such as Jayson Tatum, Jaylen Brown, Marcus Smart, Terry Rozier (via sign and trade), and a plethora of draft picks, there is likely something in Boston’s treasure chest of pieces that is appealing to the Pelicans and their upcoming rebuild.

There have been reports that Davis hasn’t moved from that stance, and if such is the case, sources here told the Herald the Pelicans will reach out to the Celtics as the most obvious trade partner. The Celts may still not be sure about a deal because it’s not known yet what the Pels will want in return for the All-Star, but there seems to be a belief that they’d be able to work things out.

A trade is going to happen in the coming months, but where?


Article written by Jack Pilgrim

Follow me on Twitter: @JackPilgrimKSR

19 Comments for REPORT: Will Pelicans owner Gayle Benson trade Anthony Davis to the Lakers? “Over my dead body.”

  1. Mad Max
    11:32 am May 18, 2019 Permalink

    Well, AD was just completely redeemed. Who would want to play for a team that is so stupid that they will not take the best deal for their team because their feelings were hurt?

    • runningunnin.454
      11:44 am May 18, 2019 Permalink

      She obviously has too much money, and it’s just a plaything for her. She is also principal owner of the N.O. Saints.

    • 4everUKblue
      11:55 am May 18, 2019 Permalink

      Someone commented the other day that AD is overrated and that he hasn’t led the Pelicans to a successful season in 7 years. Somebody is on drugs.

    • DelrayCat
      5:31 pm May 18, 2019 Permalink But no objective person can say he is now in the top 10 of the NBA’s best players. Not that the talent isn’t there, and he deserves a max contract. But he has to prove he can be a winner and play a full season first before that occurs.

    • notFromhere
      6:49 pm May 18, 2019 Permalink

      Agree, madmax.

      Now we all can see just another reason why Davis wants to leave.

  2. acatnamedbenny
    12:02 pm May 18, 2019 Permalink

    This story was proven to be false. Gayle never said such. Do your homework before posting

    • Jack Pilgrim
      12:14 pm May 18, 2019 Permalink

      Wow, almost as if that’s addressed in the article.

    • acatnamedbenny
      12:21 pm May 18, 2019 Permalink

      Lol fair enough..,but in my defense I didn’t give you the read with your clickbait article title. Most readers will see the title and draw the conclusion that gayle has that stance. Unfair and you know it

    • acatnamedbenny
      12:23 pm May 18, 2019 Permalink

      2019 journalism at its finest

    • 4everUKblue
      12:26 pm May 18, 2019 Permalink

      catnamedbenny, maybe you should get a job with KSR so we could criticize you.

  3. acatnamedbenny
    12:07 pm May 18, 2019 Permalink

    Gayle isn’t even behind the decision making of trades. It is in the hands of David griffin and mickie loomis who are actively recruiting him to stay in Nola. Why would she say something like that if they are trying to retain him

    • runningunnin.454
      12:38 pm May 18, 2019 Permalink

      Are you Ms Benson’s attorney, LOL. Say, is that the same Mickey Loomis implicated in the Saints’ bounty for injuring players, and also used an electronic device to listen to opposing coaches?

    • acatnamedbenny
      12:41 pm May 18, 2019 Permalink

      Different one

    • acatnamedbenny
      12:49 pm May 18, 2019 Permalink

      Your point is moot

    • runningunnin.454
      1:08 pm May 18, 2019 Permalink

      Really, a different Mickey Loomis? Two employees with the same name; that must have been very confusing for the Bensons.

  4. acatnamedbenny
    12:31 pm May 18, 2019 Permalink

    Don’t need to, you can criticize me here. I think my point was fair. We all bleed blue here

  5. dcforuk
    1:02 pm May 18, 2019 Permalink

    I do not mind posts like this at all because I don’t have time to follow multiple sports blogs. My life is too busy for that. Local news, world news and KSR are some of my primary daily check-ins. If you don’t like a post just simply freaking ignore it and move on. Spend more time brainstorming as opposed to blamestorming in your life…..

  6. notFromhere
    6:54 pm May 18, 2019 Permalink

    One of the many reasons that i can’t watch the NBA. So many great kids go through UK and I try to watch because of them. But it’s a sht product that’s only getting harder to watch. Too many games. Too many steps. No consistent calls from officials except to protect stars.

    Still like the college game better, and officiating has made that hard enough to watch

  7. imabucket
    11:14 pm May 18, 2019 Permalink

    Whoever said AD isn’t a top ten player in the league is tripping . Top 5 is tough but really the only ones that would be for sure better would be Steph , James harden , Leviton James. Could possibly throw in the Greek freak but they are really about on the same level . There definitely isn’t another center in the league i would take over AD