The Pelicans head coach went into the sequestered Hilton conference room just off Lake Michigan knowing that his New Orleans basketball team was about to win the number one spot in the 2019 NBA lottery and thereby receive the number one pick in the actual draft.

No one else did, but 64 year old Alvin Gentry was confident.

He wore a special Zegna silk tie with a history in NBA draft rooms going back to the Cleveland Cavaliers minority owner Jeff Cohen, who wore the tie both times the Cavs won the number one draft pick two years in a row back in 2013 & 2014.  Those picks yielded Anthony Bennett and Andrew Wiggins.

But even with his magical tie, Gentry’s Pelicans only stood about a 6% chance of walking away with the number one pick.  Still, the coach was not worried.  As he took his seat in the Hilton conference room, Alvin Gentry pulled a piece of NBA logo paper to him and wrote in caps, “THIS IS OUR MOMENT”.

Brand new Vice President of Basketball Operations for the New Orleans Pelicans David Griffin now has a pocketful of options to work with that he probably didn’t even dare dream about before the draft lottery.  The Pelicans could actually draft and hire Duke freshman sensation Zion Williamson, who is considered to be one of the top draft picks coming available in recent years.

Now it has been widely reported that Williamson had visions of himself on the big stage in the ‘Big Apple’ playing for the New York Nets, whose chances at the number one pick were much higher than those of New Orleans. The glitter and glam of New York City and all the legendary teams to have come out of there is certainly attractive, but young Zion might just find out the he will end up much better off down in the ‘Big Easy’ rather than the ‘Big Apple’.

Three words to keep in mind Zion, Jambalaya, Etouffee and Gumbo!

As soon as the lottery results were announced, long suffering, die hard Pelican fans began to speculate on the wonders of having the new guy, Zion Williamson, teaming up with their All Star power forward Anthony Davis. However, Davis has already announced that he wants to be traded out of New Orleans and has made no secret that he would prefer to end up in Los Angeles with the Lakers.  Hope remains that he will reconsider staying in New Orleans if Williamson is coming to be his teammate for next season.

There is an expression down in New Orleans that goes, ‘Ya know, but ya neva know”.  New Orleans is a city full of all sorts of magic, so good things might be coming to the Pelicans at last.