Jameer Nelson is officially a Pelican.
Nelson, who was on the free agent market for two days, has signed with the New Orleans Pelicans, the team announced Sunday, hours before the Pelicans 8:30 p.m. game against the Lakers in Los Angeles.
Nelson made his Pelicans debut in Sunday's first quarter and played more than 10 minutes as New Orleans' first sub off the bench.
Nelson wore No. 1 for New Orleans on Sunday and will wear No. 14 thereafter.
The Pelicans and Nelson agreed to a one-year deal, Yahoo! Sports reported Saturday afternoon, when multiple media outlets reported Nelson's signing with New Orleans.
A 35-year-old, 6-foot point guard, Nelson was only on the free-agent market for a little more than 48 hours. The Denver Nuggets announced they had waived Nelson on Thursday to make room for forward Richard Jefferson on the team's 15-man roster.
"He's a veteran guy," Pelicans coach Alvin Gentry told reporters at the Staples Center in Los Angeles. "He played in a system that we're trying to install right now. Obviously he's familiar with [assistant] coach [Chris] Finch and some of the things that we're trying to do offensively. He's a guy that's made some big shots over his career."
Finch, who is in his first stint with the Pelicans this season, helped guide the Nuggets offense to 111.7 points per game last season, the third-highest mark in the league.
"The transition should be pretty smooth," Finch said in an interview with FOX Sports South on the Pelicans-Lakers game broadcast.
New Orleans waived reserve guard Jordan Crawford as a subsequent move for Nelson to maintain a 15-man roster with a pair two-way contracts. Crawford played in 21 games as a Pelican and averaged 22.6 minutes, 13.6 points, 3.0 assists, shot 41.0 percent from 3 and 48.3 percent from the field.
In two games this season, Crawford averaged 9.0 points, 5.0 assists and 1.0 rebounds in 18.5 minutes.
In 75 games and 39 starts, Nelson averaged 27.3 minutes and 9.2 points per game last season with the Denver Nuggets. Nelson has averaged nearly 12 points per game and six assists during a 13-year NBA career.
Nelson spent 10 seasons with the Orlando Magic from 2004-14 and has also spent time with the Dallas Mavericks, Boston Celtics and three seasons with Nuggets from 2014 until last season.
With starting point guard Rajon Rondo sidelined until at least mid-November to recover from core muscle surgery on Oct. 10, the Pelicans backcourt was in need of additional help.
Whether Nelson will be used as a starter — at least until Rondo's return — or as a burst off the bench has yet to be determined, Gentry said.
"We've talked about that," the coach said. "We've looked at it and we can see both situations, as being real positive for our team. It's just a matter of us of getting together again and just really thinking it out, and mapping it out, and seeing what we feel is going to be the best.
"He can help us with the ball movement. Obviously we've struggled some with the second unit, so he gives us a little stability there also."
Jrue Holiday and E'Twaun Moore, the Pelicans starting guards through two games this season, have combined to average 14 points per game through two games — both losses.
Including Rondo, the Pelicans have five players who are expected to miss at least a month because of injuries: Rondo (core muscle), Forward Solomon Hill (hamstring), center Omer Asik (illness), guard Frank Jackson (foot) and center Alexis Ajinca (knee).
Upon Rondo's return in roughly a month, he and Nelson may even be on the floor at the same time, Finch said.
“They’re different," Finch said. "They both can push the pace. Jameer’s obviously more of a scorer with playmaking abilities and Rondo’s a playmaker who can score opportunistically. I actually think, at times, that they may even be able to play together.
"Jameer’s a great spot-up shooter, 3-point shooter and we need more shooters to open it up for everybody."