Kendrick Perkins frustrated with Pelicans' effort: 'Not what I signed up for'

Does Anthony Davis have leadership issues? (1:35)

The SportsNation crew examines if Anthony Davis has leadership issues, or if he just needs more time to mature. (1:35)

Veteran center Kendrick Perkins is none too pleased with his teammates' effort in his first season with the New Orleans Pelicans, who are slowly fading in the Western Conference standings.

"It's very disappointing. At the end of the day, this is not what I signed up for," Perkins told Yahoo Sports. "I signed up after I looked from the outside, coming in to a good young team that has been making strides in the right direction. We got real comfortable. We ain't got long to make a push."

The Pelicans are 12-26 entering Friday's game against the Charlotte Hornets, but New Orleans is still only 4.5 games behind the Utah Jazz for the final playoff spot in the Western Conference.

Perkins, who missed a month earlier this season because of a pectoral injury, pointed to injuries -- and not first-year Pelican coach Alvin Gentry -- as the problem. The Pelicans have used 17 different starting lineups this season.

"Even though the West isn't what it used to be, we can make up some ground," said Perkins, who signed with New Orleans as a free agent to help mentor Anthony Davis. "But we got to make it up sooner rather than later. [The coaches] are trying everything. They're trying to put us in a position every night to be successful. The effort is not on coach. It's on players."

Perkins, 31, has also played for the Boston Celtics, Oklahoma City Thunder and Cleveland Cavaliers during his 12-year career. He is averaging 3.0 points and 2.1 rebounds in just nine games this season.

Davis, who missed Tuesday's loss to the Lakers but returned with 24 points against the Kings on Wednesday as the Pelicans snapped a four-game losing streak, said he's also unhappy with the team's effort.

"I'm frustrated with losing and our energy and effort on the floor," Davis told Yahoo Sports. "But I know guys are really trying. They go out and compete every night. The frustration comes more when we don't. Like in the Laker game [on Tuesday], we didn't bring it. It's even more frustrating when I can't play."