Injury-plagued Pelicans reach deal with veteran Josh Smith

According to Yahoo's Shams Charania, Josh Smith will likely sign with the Pelicans under the injury hardship exception. During Tuesday's 103-93 loss to the Portland Trail Blazers, New Orleans was down to two big men, DeMarcus Cousins and Cheick Diallo, after Anthony Davis was forced to leave the game because of a sore left knee.

General manager Dell Demps is cashing in one of the Pelicans' injury hardship exceptions and using the additional roster spot to sign the 6-foot-9, 225-pound forward. Davis has not been diagnosed with structural damage but is questionable for Thursday night's game in Sacramento.

After playing last season for the Sichuan Blue Whales of the Chinese Basketball League, veteran forward Josh Smith will reportedly return to the NBA.

He last averaged six points per game, 3.5 rebounds per games, and 1.6 assists per game back in 2016 for the Houston Rockets and Los Angeles Clippers. He was never an All-Star, but entered the team's starting lineup nearly immediately and stayed there until through the 2012-13 season, averaging 15.3 points and 8.0 rebounds per game in his nine seasons with the team. This move could also indicate that the Pelicans are not happy with their current answer at backup power forward and are looking for reinforcements anywhere they can.

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