Dealer Dell was Dull Dell on Thursday night.
As expected, Pelicans General Manager Dell Demps didn’t make any deals to move the Pelicans into the first round of the NBA draft.
It made for a ho-hum night at the team’s practice facility in Metairie.
The 10 media members watching the draft could only hope Demps was teasing when he walked into the room before the draft.
“There are a lot of people here for the No. 56 pick,” he said.
Dealer Dell wasn’t bluffing.
By the time No. 56 did roll around — after 11 p.m. — the Pelicans selected Branden Dawson, a forward from Michigan State.
I would tell you a little more about Dawson, a second-team All-Big Ten selection, but there’s no need to. The Pelicans traded the rights to Dawson to the Los Angeles Clippers for cash considerations.
So the Pelicans chose not to enhance their roster through the draft this season. A second-round pick at No. 56 would’ve been a long shot to make it anyway.
Demps was not available for comments after the selection.
He had been fairly mum about the draft leading up to it, but hinted last week that the team wouldn’t be doing anything to move into the first round.
So, for the second year in a row, New Orleans didn’t have a pick in the first round. And for the third year in a row, the team ended the round without adding a player; it selected Nerlens Noel with the No. 6 selection in 2013, then traded him to Philadelphia in the deal that brought guard Jrue Holiday to New Orleans.
The Pelicans traded this year’s first-round pick last summer in the deal that brought center Omer Asik over from the Houston Rockets.
With the Pelicans’ pick — No. 18 overall — the Rockets chose Sam Dekker of Wisconsin. Dekker was a key reason the Badgers upset Kentucky in the Final Four.
While the first round was quiet for the Pelicans, there was at least something for the city of New Orleans to get excited about. Kelly Oubre, who played at Kansas, was drafted with the 15th pick by the Atlanta Hawks.
Oubre was born and raised in New Orleans and sports a tattoo on his arm to show it.
But he and his father moved to Houston in 2005, evacuating after Hurricane Katrina struck. He still has plenty of family members in the Big Easy, including his mother and siblings.
“Whoever gets me is getting a jewel,” Oubre said on the ESPN broadcast of the draft.
No, he wasn’t referring to his shoes.
Oubre also made the night’s biggest fashion statement, sporting a pair of silver glistening spiked shoes.
He was drafted by the Hawks, but was later traded to the Washington Wizards.
But that was the only trade involving anything dealing with the city of New Orleans Thursday night.
The Pelicans haven’t kept a first-round pick since 2012, when the team selected Anthony Davis at No. 1 overall and Austin Rivers at No. 10.
Davis, whom new Pelicans coach Alvin Gentry called the “best player in the league not named LeBron James,” proved to be the right pick three years ago. Now the team looks to add a few more pieces around him.
So far, the only change has been Gentry running the team this year instead of Monty Williams, who was fired in May after five seasons.
After Thursday’s lack of additions, any new pieces will come through free agency, which begins July 1.
Chances are, it will be a bit more exciting than the 2015 draft was, but it would be hard not to be.