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New Orleans Pelicans 2013 Draft Preview
By Jim Brighters, NBA Editor

The New Orleans Pelicans (yes, remember the new name) were the big winners of last year's draft, selecting Anthony Davis first overall.

This year, the results weren't terribly encouraging, but they choose sixth.

Davis and Robin Lopez make up a decent big man combination, and Eric Gordon and Ryan Anderson provide great shooting. Greivis Vasquez improved into a legitimate NBA point guard. Austin Rivers, the 10th pick last year, is still seen as a possible long-term solution at the point.

The Pelicans can really wait and see how the first five picks shake out, then go from there. New Orleans can take any position with the exception of power forward - Davis' spot - and make a case that it's worthwhile.

With so much confusion at the top, coupled with the potential for wheeling and dealing, not much can be said with any confidence about what direction the Pelicans go.

Here's what we know, to some degree - the first seven picks will probably be Nerlens Noel, Ben McLemore, Otto Porter, Alex Len, Anthony Bennett, Victor Oladipo and Trey Burke.

That means, the Pelicans can get one of those talents. Realistically, Noel, McLemore and Porter will most assuredly be off the board. That leaves the remaining four in play.

Also, if New Orleans doesn't view Rivers as the future at the point, and Burke is off the board, that brings Syracuse sophomore Michael Carter-Williams into the conversation.

Players under contract: G: Eric Gordon; F: Ryan Anderson; C/F: Anthony Davis; C: Robin Lopez; F: Jason Smith; G: Austin Rivers; G: Greivis Vasquez; F: Lance Thomas; F: Darius Miller; G: Brian Roberts; G: Terrel Harris

Free agents: F: Al-Farouq Aminu; G: Xavier Henry; G: Roger Mason; C: Louis Amundson

Recent Draft History:

2012: Anthony Davis (1), Austin Rivers (10), Darius Miller (46)

2011: Josh Harrellson (45)

2010: Cole Aldrich (11)

2009: Darren Collison (21)

2008: Darrell Arthur (27)

Draft picks: 1st round (6th overall)

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