The Anthony Davis saga is spiraling out of control. It was less than three weeks ago the six-time All-Star requested a trade from the New Orleans Pelicans, indicating he wouldn’t sign an extension with the team this summer. Most assumed Pelicans owner Gayle Benson and general manager Dell Demps would honor Davis’ wishes despite having him under contract through next season, but last week’s trade deadline came and went with him remaining in New Orleans, leaving team and player to decide how to best approach the delicate matter of whether or not to play him over the season’s remainder.

Or so we thought. Instead, the league office has intervened, reportedly threatening to fine the Pelicans $100,000 for every game the team sits a healthy Davis despite the fact that playing him invites the risk of injury (the league has denied this), a development that could negatively effect his trade value. Scott Kushner of The Advocate provided further insight into this increasingly untenable situation on Monday:

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Anthony Davis made it perfectly clear he doesn’t want to be a part of the Pelicans. The Pelicans, per a litany of sources, tried to make it so he wouldn’t play another game for the franchise.

Yet, commissioner Adam Silver and the NBA office are forcing the Pelicans to play Davis as a nod to the NBA Players Association hoping to avoid potential litigation and cast notice of moral hazard to teams interested in intentionally losing games.

Davis played 24 minutes in his team’s 118-88 loss to the Orlando Magic on Tuesday, scoring just three points on 1-of-9 shooting. He alluded to the eroding influence of his presence after the game, saying, “We sucked. Nobody was interested in playing, is what it looked like.”