As Idaho Stampede guard Pierre Jackson turned heads in the early months of the 2013-14 NBA D-League season, speculation as to when he would earn himself a call-up to The Association continued to swirl.
But despite his rather awing production and evident progress, there was just one problem with such a theory. Having acquired his draft rights following the 2013 NBA Draft, the New Orleans Pelicans stood tall as the only team that could subsequently promote him at all.
Prior to the season, Jackson signed to play in France after not reaching a deal with New Orleans as a second rounder. Though he returned from overseas rather quickly, the NBA team didn't exactly have a spot to offer him on their squad.
From there on out, Jackson stole the show in the D-League as a minor league athlete. He averaged 29.1 points (on 45% from the field and 35% from deep), 6.2 assists, and 1.9 steals through 31 contests before signing abroad once again midseason.
Having since returned to the states, Marc Spears reports that Jackson will play for the Pelicans' NBA Summer League team for the second straight offseason. With the organization virtually holding all of the cards in this situation, such participation is a smart move on Jackson's part. On one hand, he may be able to earn that coveted spot in New Orleans once and for all. If not, at least he'll be out there strutting his stuff for other teams to see, take notice, and then subsequently inquire about the trade availability of his rights.
<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p>New Orleans tomorrow ...... </p>— Pierre Jackson (@Pappyjackk) <a href="https://twitter.com/Pappyjackk/statuses/471108259701456896">May 27, 2014</a></blockquote>
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And as the recent tweet by Jackson above would seem to suggest, he may even be getting a head start on things. Obviously, it's unconfirmed whether or not he's heading to town as a way of being closer to the team and/or any potential players still working out near the respective facilities. Such a trip could be simply be for leisure, or, even for early Summer League prep.
Still, it's worth noting that this is the time of year where NBA teams begin to hold private workouts of sorts with the NBA Draft and free agency coming up. Perhaps Jackson is coming to The Big Easy to give team officials another early taste of what they've continued to miss out on.