The New Orleans Pelicans parted ways with general manager Dell Demps on Friday morning after nearly nine years with Demps leading the front office, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski.
New Orleans has parted ways with GM Dell Demps, league sources tell ESPN.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) February 15, 2019
Demps elected not to trade superstar Anthony Davis at the Feb. 7 deadline despite Davis’ public trade request, which dominated the league’s news cycle over the past week.
According to Wojnarowski, the Pelicans’ ownership was furious after Davis exited Thursday night’s game with a shoulder injury.
The team wanted to sit Davis for the rest of the season, so as to make sure he stayed healthy and they could re-engage in trade negotiations after the season, once the Boston Celtics would be eligible to acquire Davis without giving up Kyrie Irving. However, ESPN’s Zach Lowe reported that the team feared that the NBA would fine them the maximum $100,000 for every game that they kept Davis sidelined.
With Demps out, the franchise is now considering internal candidates to promote to GM, including David Booth and Danny Ferry, per Wojnarowski. Ferry previously served as GM of the Cleveland Cavaliers and Atlanta Hawks but stepped down as Hawks GM in 2015 amid controversy.
Despite the front office change, the Pelicans’ ownership remains satisfied with the work of the team’s coaching staff and players since Davis’ trade request, per Wojnarowski.