Pelicans vs. Raptors recap: The good, the bad and the Lonzo Ball

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Nicholas Schwartz
·2 min read
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The New Orleans Pelicans opened the 2020-21 regular season with an impressive come-from-behind victory north of the border in Toronto.

The Pelicans weathered an ugly first half that saw both Zion Williamson and Lonzo Ball limited with foul trouble, and dominated the third quarter on both sides of the floor, outscoring the Raptors 38-22 to overturn a seven-point halftime deficit.

The Pelicans were red-hot from outside the arc in the third, shooting 7-of-8 from distance, and pulled away in the fourth quarter to win 113-99. Brandon Ingram led the Pelicans with 24 points, and was just one rebound short of recording his first career triple-double.

Here’s the good, the bad and the Lonzo Ball from Wednesday’s season opener.

The good: Eric Bledsoe's offensive production

In his first regular season game as a Pelican, Bledsoe was one of New Orleans' most reliable options on a night where Zion Williamson and Lonzo Ball struggled with foul trouble. Bledsoe kept the Pelicans within range with a series of threes in the first half, preventing the Raptors from turning the game into a blowout and enabling the third-quarter surge. Bledsoe finished the game with 18 points on 6-of-12 shooting, including 4-of-8 from beyond the arc, along with 6 assists, one steal and one block. https://twitter.com/PelicansNBA/status/1341918312180019200

The bad: Turnovers and free-throw shooting

It was a sloppy game for both teams, with 44 total turnovers, but the Pelicans led the way with 24. Zion Williamson had a team-high turnover total of six, and Lonzo Ball added five. It's the first game of the season, so we'll give the Pelicans a pass here. New Orleans was just as wasteful at the free-throw line, shooting 10-of-20.

The Ball: A solid second-half performance

Lonzo Ball had a difficult first half, missing a handful of open 3-point looks and picking up three first-half fouls that limited his minutes. He was instrumental in thee second-half comeback, however, and finished the game with 16 points, five rebounds, two assists and two blocks. https://twitter.com/PelicansNBA/status/1341931974714257408