Comedian and comedy theater founder Chris Trew is a New Orleans Pelicans superfan who has a single season ticket directly behind the visitors’ bench inside New Orleans’ Smoothie King Center, where he interacts with the opposing team’s players and coaches. He will be documenting his experiences here for us in a regular column called, Behind the Bench. You can follow his in-game interactions live on Twitter at @Trew2theGame. The Pelicans’ opponent in this column: the Philadelphia 76ers, who visited New Orleans last month.
The Philadelphia 76ers zombied out of the locker room with minimal pep in their step. The Pelicans are not much better, sure, but playing at home is enough to zip out of the locker room with some measure of joy, however forced. Philadelphia’s young squad sleepwalked through layup drills while the veterans chucked jump shots with dead eyes. It was actually kind of scary.
— Carl Landry had a brief and forgettable stint in New Orleans from 2010-2012. This qualifies him for the always entertaining “Do you miss New Orleans” question. The most confusing answer I’ve gotten so far was from Austin Rivers. Carl Landry’s is a close second. The man’s got a good smile that he wasn’t afraid to use as he said “Yes, I do.” I said “really?”, hoping to get more information on the subject and he said “Yes.” We held eye contact for longer than I really wanted to. Carl Landry disarmed me with his charm and inability to expound on his answer.
— Alvin Gentry moseyed over to the visitor’s bench for the obligatory “Hello, how are you” handshake and hug with a former colleague. Tonight’s blast from the past was point guard Ish Smith, best known as the only bright spot in the disappointing New Orleans Pelicans season and the worst thing to ever happen to Tankadelphia. As Gentry embraced his former player, the tension from my section rose. Ish Smith would go on to be cheered all night in a confused passive aggressive tone. We seemed happy he was thriving but bothered by the terms. He frequently acknowledged us, and seemed genuinely stoked to be playing basketball for the 76ers.