Tall Blacks star Corey Webster has made another step towards his goal of a guaranteed NBA roster spot, making his NBA preseason debut for the New Orleans Pelicans this afternoon.
Webster looked like he belonged in his eight minutes and 23 seconds of court time against the Indiana Pacers, although it wasn't a version of the shooting guard many would have recognised.
Asked to play the majority of his minutes at point guard, Webster was entrusted with running the Pelicans offence, and did a solid job, with three assists, including one to Anthony Davis for a dunk.
In order to man the point, Webster kept his scoring game in check, only shooting once - missing a long step-back two. Although not showcasing the elements of his game which impressed many for the New Zealand Breakers and Tall Blacks, Webster filled a role asked of him by coach Alvin Gentry with competence.
Guarding the Pacers point guards, Webster again did creditably. Although he got lost in a mass of rotations to leave an open three-point shot, he was physical against penetrating guards, most notably when he forced Joe Young into a travelling call after an excellent job denying Young the space to get to the rim.
Webster ended with three assists and a rebound on his 0/1 shooting night, overall acquitting himself well, aside from a turnover and a foul on his first possession, where he had his pocket picked by Rodney Stuckey before fouling the combo guard on an and-one.
Webster's competition for the available Pelicans roster spot also has mixed games.
Chris Douglas-Roberts and Bryce Dejean Jones got the most minutes to show their talents, with Douglas-Roberts having 10 points (4/7 shooting), two steals and two turnovers, while Dejean Jones had seven points, two rebounds, two assists and a steal on 2/8 shooting.
The other player in the mix - Sean Kilpatrick - was gunning like a madman, putting up 12 shots in 14 minutes but only hitting three. He added one rebound and a steal to go with those eight points.
The Pelicans are next in action in six days time against the Atlanta Hawks.