Pelicans to sit Anthony Davis until trade deadline passes

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CHICAGO -- Despite Anthony Davis being listed as questionable headed into Wednesday's matchup against the Chicago Bulls, New Orleans Pelicans coach Alvin Gentry said the team plans to sit the five-time All-Star center until after Thursday's trade deadline.

"He is [available], but we're not going to play him until after the trading deadline," Gentry said. "I think everybody can understand that."

The NBA trade deadline expires at 3 p.m. ET Thursday.

Davis participated in Wednesday morning's shootaround at the United Center, chatting with teammates and various assistant coaches, but he will miss his ninth consecutive game since suffering a left index finger injury on Jan. 18.

The Pelicans have gone 2-6 in his absence.

Davis requested a trade through agent Rich Paul a little more than a week ago, but he isn't eligible to become a free agent until July 2020.

Davis' preferred destinations include the Los Angeles Lakers, LA Clippers and Milwaukee Bucks. He has informed the Pelicans that he wouldn't sign a five-year, $239 million supermax contract with the club this summer or next, and he has also made it known that he doesn't plan to sign an extension with any team this summer -- as the plan is to do so once he becomes a free agent.

"Obviously, it's on everyone's mind," Gentry said. "But we just try to put it on the back burner and focus on the task at hand. I think everything kind of clears up [after Davis is traded], at least for a while. And you can go back to I guess whatever our new normal is going to be.

"It's just part of it. It's part of the business, and you just deal with it like you would anything else."