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Anthony Davis remains member of Pelicans — for now

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Posted at 8:28 AM, Feb 07, 2019
and last updated 2019-02-07 09:28:03-05

MIAMI (AP) — Anthony Davis is still a member of the New Orleans Pelicans.

By 2 p.m. Thursday, that may change.

Davis, who has said he would accept a long-term deal with the Milwaukee Bucks and a few other teams, remained in place Wednesday, though the run-up to the NBA's annual trade deadline picked up steam in plenty of other locales around the league — including Dallas, where Mavericks forward Harrison Barnes didn't play in the fourth quarter of a win over Charlotte because of a trade with Sacramento.

"I got word of it during the game," Dallas coach Rick Carlisle said.

Tobias Harris going to Philadelphia from the Los Angeles Clippers as the centerpiece of a six-person, four-draft-pick swap was the first notable deal of Trade Deadline Eve. Later, Chicago agreed to acquire Otto Porter Jr. from Washington for Jabari Parker and Bobby Portis. The Mavs and Kings agreed to swap Barnes for Zach Randolph and Justin Jackson, and as the day was winding down the Wizards struck again — this time sending Markieff Morris to New Orleans for Wesley Johnson.

The Wizards-Pelicans deal was confirmed to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity by people directly involved in the negotiations, all speaking on condition of anonymity pending the mandatory NBA trade calls to make the deals official.

"Part of the business," New Orleans coach Alvin Gentry said.

The Pelicans haven't played Davis since he and agent Rich Paul went public last week with their trade request, and decided not to play the six-time All-Star in Chicago on Wednesday, either. The reasons for that were obvious; in case a deal can be made, it's not worth it for the Pelicans to risk an injury.

"It's going to eventually get resolved," Gentry said.

There will be resolution — maybe just partial resolution, but resolution nonetheless — when the deadline arrives Thursday afternoon. Davis is still under contract for next season, so the Pelicans are in a slippery spot where they don't need to deal their best player now for fear of losing him in July for nothing but also know that he doesn't want to remain in New Orleans.

"It's going to eventually get resolved." — New Orleans coach Alvin Gentry, about a possible trade involving Anthony Davis

If the Pelicans don't trade Davis by Thursday, they'll almost certainly be back in the depths of trade talks in June and July — draft time and free agency.

"I mean, obviously, it's on everyone's mind," Gentry said. "But we just try to put it on the back burner and focus on the task at hand and that's playing the Chicago Bulls. Not anything we can do about it. ... I think everything kind of clears up after (Thursday), at least for a while. And you can go back to, I guess, normal, or whatever our new normal is going to be."