Injuries KO Pelicans’ expectations for season _lowres

New Orleans Pelicans guard Tyreke Evans drives against the Sacramento Kings during the first quarter of an NBA basketball game, Wednesday, Jan. 13, 2016, in Sacramento, Calif. (AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli) ORG XMIT: OTKRP105

Tyreke Evans is seeking specialists' opinions on his injured right knee, and the evaluation could lead to an early end to his season.

But the Pelicans guard hasn't yet opted to shut down for the season, coach Alvin Gentry said on Wednesday.

"Right now what's happening is he's seeing some specialists and getting some second opinions and things like that, and we'll see where that leads to," Gentry said after the Pelicans' shootaround Wednesday at the Smoothie King Center. "That's basically it right now.

"There is a possibility that it could be something that keeps him out the rest of the season, but we won't know that until the opinions are gathered and the information is processed."

Yahoo Sports' The Vertical reported late Tuesday night that Evans planned to have surgery on his right knee and likely would miss the remainder of the season.

Evans had arthroscopic surgery on the knee in May and again in October and sat the first 17 games of the season. He's missed the past seven games, saying after a loss to Houston on Jan. 25 that he felt pain in his knee prior to the game. Evans had his knee drained prior to the game, which he'd done at least two previous times in January.

An MRI showed no structural damage, Pelicans coach Alvin Gentry said at the time. The Pelicans referred to Evans' knee pain first as soreness, then as tendinitis.

Gentry said last weekend that the Pelicans planned to rest Evans through the upcoming All-Star break, which begins Friday.

Now, Evans likely will be out for some longer run, potentially for the remainder of the season.

The 26-year-old Evans is averaging 15.2 points, 6.6 assists and 5.2 rebounds per game this season. The Pelicans are 11-14 this season in games Evans plays.

"He's one of our top scorers," forward Anthony Davis said Wednesday. "He does so much on the floor for us defensively and offensively. He's one of our leaders. For him to go down, it's tough for us. But at the same time, we got to have guys step up and try to fill his shoes. It's going to be tough, but everybody's demanding here."

Pelicans players have missed 152 games this season due to injury or illness. Evans has missed 26, and New Orleans is 7-19 in his absence.

"This year the one thing we've done is that we've always looked at the guys that are available," Gentry said. "If a guy's available then we see how he can fit in and how we can use him and then we just move on. As much as we miss him or we need him, he's not available to us. So we just have to figure out game-plan-wise and everything else, who we can put out there and try to fill holes. That's what we've done the entire season."