Through two games, Zion Williamson has impressed and he made a huge splash in his NBA debut against the San Antonio Spurs
Announcer: Williamson comes across the halfcourt circle, dribbles left, crosses back right, stops, jab step, pulls for 3! MONEY! WELCOME TO THE NBA BIG FELLA!
Enviable dominance for a 19-year-old phenom. A debut for the history books.
Obviously, it was worth the wait.
If you didn’t have your popcorn ready Wednesday night; you definitely missed a show. Zion Williamson, the No. 1 pick in the 2019 NBA Draft; sat out for a huge chunk of the 2019-20 season with a knee injury, and made his rookie debut at home in front of a tempestuous New Orleans Pelicans‘ fan base. For Zion; he’s as good as advertised.
Williamson erupted for 22 points against the San Antonio Spurs; with 17 of those 22 being scored consecutively in the fourth quarter with just three minutes remaining. The Pelicans’ prevailed over the Spurs 121-117. With the severity of Zion’s injury; the Pelicans’ have depended mostly on Brandon Ingram, Jrue Holiday, and others for scoring. And with Williamson’s return; it could enrich the Pelicans’ offense even more. The only detriment for Williamson in his debut were his five turnovers; three in the first half, and two in the second.
New Orleans controlled the pace throughout the second half before Zion showcased his eclectic skill set. We all knew he could dunk, and put people on posters. But everyone questioned his shooting ability from 3-point territory. He seems to have worked on this prior to the NBA stage.
Shooting repetition always improves a player’s trajectory. It certainly did for Williamson after his departure from Duke.
It was around the 9:00 mark of the fourth quarter when Zion’s 3-point show started to pour. He nailed a big one that shut down San Antonio’s lead 99-94. And then with 3:00 left; it was 3-pointer after 3-pointer. Holiday finished with 12 points to add to Williamson’s 22-point total. He also added seven rebounds and three assists.
Williamson’s much-anticipated return had fans, coaches, and players in the NBA eager to see him play in his first regular-season game as a pro. That eagerness also circumvented the Pelicans’ front office. Think about it. When you have a No.1 pick like Williamson; the expectations are incredibly high. But why? Well, in terms of marketing and sales; Zion is a steal for the Pelicans’.
Initially, most fans assumed that Williamson would be out for his entire rookie season. An assumption that was proven to be wrong. Why? Perhaps five 3-pointers in less than three minutes? You don’t expect that from the average rookie. Especially a guy like Zion. A ‘tight-end like’ body with broad shoulders? How can you defend this kid? Again, the pervasive eagerness was seen early, and we’re still eager for more.
As the season continues; so does Zion’s dominance. I envisioned this prior to his debut. He’s a true pro. He’s still a little wet behind the ears with more to learn. But his penchant for the game seems to be innate.
He’s a natural. He’s a walking highlight reel. But what we didn’t know is that he can create hurricanes from downtown.
We’re in for a treat this season.
But there are still four seconds left in this one.
Announcer: Zion gets the deflection, goes coast to coast, WITH THE 360 WINDMILL!!!! BOOM!!!!
WELCOME TO THE NBA BIG FELLA!!