Zion Williamson Brings Excitement To New Orleans In NBA Debut, Breaks NBA Record [Video]
On Wednesday, the number one overall pick in the 2019 NBA Draft, Zion Williamson, made a statement in the most highly anticipated debut since LeBron James’ first game in 2003. The Pelicans had previously held him out after the former Duke star suffered a torn meniscus in his knee during a November preseason game.
Listed at 6’6”, 284 pounds, Williamson was named a starter in Wednesday’s matchup with San Antonio and proceeded to play sporadically until he entered the game in the fourth quarter for a historic stretch. With the Pelicans down nine, he caught a pass from Lonzo Ball and hit his first career three pointer from the top of the arc. He wasn’t done yet. In just three minutes of action, Williamson scored 17 straight points and went 4-4 from three point range becoming the first player to accomplish this feat in an NBA debut.
He was looking unstoppable but sat the final five minutes of the game due to a minutes restriction coach Alvin Gentry and vice president of baskeball operations David Griffin decided on prior to the game. The Spurs ended up winning 121-117.
“It’s not something that I think the coaching staff was overly comfortable with, just conceptually, but I also don’t really care,” Griffin said on Adrian Wojnarowski’s podcast. “We spent 14 weeks putting him position to have a sustainable future and we’re going to be very mindful of that moving forward.“
The day after his first game Gentry told the media,”He is fine, really. Practiced today and everything, so there was no soreness, and he said he was fine.”
Williamson will take the court again on Friday when the Pelicans host the Nuggets.
“There’s really no comparison to me. I try to add every level to my game,” Williamson told Wojnarowski. “My body is just built different. Some people try to look at it as a weakness, but I look at it as a blessing.People aren’t used to guarding this kind of size and I’m able to add a little finesse to my game so it has flavor and I’m a playmaker so I can create for my teammates and when I have to finish I’m gonna finish.”
— New Orleans Pelicans (@PelicansNBA) January 23, 2020