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Report: Pelicans to pursue Kyle Lowry

Raptors guard Kyle Lowry vs. Pelicans

NEW ORLEANS, LOUISIANA - JANUARY 02: Kyle Lowry #7 of the Toronto Raptors shoots against Steven Adams #12 and Zion Williamson #1 of the New Orleans Pelicans during the first half at the Smoothie King Center on January 02, 2021 in New Orleans, Louisiana. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Jonathan Bachman/Getty Images)

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Kyle Lowry will be one of the top free agents this summer.

The catch: He’s 35. His long-term value is limited.

But that might not be a problem for the Pelicans, who have incentive to quickly impress Zion Williamson.

Marc Stein:

Lowry has also been linked to the 76ers, Heat and Knicks. He also could return to the Raptors. There’s plenty of interest in the point guard who wants to maximize his compensation.

New Orleans would have to make major moves to open enough cap space to sign Lowry outright – possible, but complicated.

The Pelicans could also acquire Lowry in a sign-and-trade. They could even send out restricted free agent Lonzo Ball in a double sign-and-trade. Ball wouldn’t even necessarily need to land in Toronto. But that type of arrangement is even-more complicated.

Lowry would likely come to New Orleans at a high cost – both his salary and the outgoing assets to either clear cap room or facilitate a sign-and-trade. To some degree, the Pelicans should focus on the prime of 21-year-old Williamson, who has many years more ahead of him than Lowry does.

But if Lowry helps New Orleans make the 2022 playoffs, that’d be gratifying. The Pelicans should be willing to pay some price for that. Maybe Lowry would lift New Orleans even higher than merely reaching the postseason. A team can’t catch the right breaks in the playoffs unless making the playoffs.

Many teams are looking for their Chris Paul, and Lowry could be the Pelicans’.