Pelicans coach Gentry: Davis to play Friday vs. Pacers

Pelicans big man Anthony Davis requested a trade midway through this past season.

New Orleans Pelicans star Anthony Davis will indeed suit up when the team hosts the Indiana Pacers on Friday, coach Alvin Gentry told reporters.

Gentry would not comment on the matter beyond saying, “he’s playing tomorrow.”

Davis told Scott Kushner of the New Orleans Advocate following Sunday’s All-Star Game that he intends to resume his normal workload and finish the season.

He suffered a minor shoulder injury in the Pelicans’ final game before the break, and told Kushner the plan all along was to play limited minutes to avoid further injury. He added that the shoulder is “fine.”

Davis requested a trade late last month and indicated he is open to playing for just about any other franchise. He told Kushner other stars did not make any recruiting pitches during All-Star Weekend in Charlotte.

“Guys didn’t talk about it,” he said. “I mean we didn’t even see each other that much to talk about it. We were just here to get ready for this game today and that’s really what we did.”

Marc Stein of the New York Times told ESPN Radio prior to the All-Star Game that it was “nonstop Anthony Davis talk” over the weekend.

“They have to shelve him for their own good,” Stein added. “Teams have to be able to exercise their own rights to protect themselves in that situation.”

Davis is 6-foot-10 and averaging 28.1 points and 12.9 rebounds, as well as 2.5 blocks. He was heavily pursued by the Los Angeles Lakers and Boston Celtics prior to the trade deadline, and those two and more are expected to do the same after the season. He is eligible for free agency in July 2020.