Outsiders often mistake New Orleans Pelicans fans' reaction for frustration when guard Jrue Holiday is announced during the starting lineup portion of the pregame pomp and circumstance before games at the Smoothie King Center.
"Jruuuuuuuuuuuuue" does sound a lot like "booooo", to be fair.
But Pelicans fans' reaction to Anthony Davis' return to the court after his trade request was made public on Jan. 28 was unmistakable.
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Loud, piercing boo's rang throughout the arena as the all-star forward's name was announced last in the team's starting five moments before Friday night against the Timberwolves.
Davis ran onto the floor last out of the tunnel during the team's warmup without any noticeable greeting, similar to the few times he was shown on the big screen stretching and shooting layups.
After the tip, most of the fans in attendance continued to boo the No. 1 overall pick from the 2012 draft every time Davis touched the ball. Fans were even unafraid to let known their frustrations whenever he would put up a shot, changing to brief cheers if he made a bucket. When he would go to the free throw line, a large portion of fans boo'd, with a small section of fans chanting "A-D, A-D, A-D." Those same fans continued to chant the forward's name during an opening timeout in the first quarter, without any boo's in response.
After Davis' request was made public, the Pelicans briefly removed any trace of him from the team's pre-game hype video shown on the big screen and also pulled his jerseys from the team store. Friday night, Davis gear was back on sale, and he appeared a couple times in the video, but in a much smaller role than starters like Jrue Holiday.
Through injuries and trade requests, the New Orleans Pelicans have appeared a markedly different team the past few weeks, missing five of the …
The end of the video was also changed, taking out the portion where, in the past, a photo of every player was shown with the team's motto "Do It Big" below the visual of the Pelicans roster. On Friday, only the phrase remained.
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