NBA Hall of Famer referenced comments Glen “Big Baby” Davis made to TMZ Sports a few months into Zion’s rookie campaign. Big Baby stressed the importance of Willamson getting his body in shape so that he wouldn’t go through the same experience Davis went through over his 8-year run in the NBA.
There was a young man who played at LSU – ‘Big Baby’ Davis – Big Baby made a comment about eight months ago. And he came on that show, and he said, ‘Hey now, guys, I’m about to get into trouble with what I’m about to say. I know everybody loves Zion, and I love him too. But Zion has the same body type that I got.’ He was talking about himself. And Davis said, ‘If Williamson don’t get into shape, we’ll never know his full potential.’Karl Malone, Knuckleheads with Quentin Richardson & Darius Miles
The 6’9″ Davis played his entire career at 289 pounds; Williamson is listed at 6’7″ and 284 pounds. The extra weight caused numerous lower-body issues for “Big Baby,” and he expressed his concerns that the same might happen to Williamson. Karl Malone did the same thing.
Zion needs to get into shape. If he don’t get in shape, we might not ever know his full potential.Karl Malone, Knuckleheads with Quentin Richardson & Darius Miles
Malone even offered to work with Zion for free and get a 20-year-old in shape required for a long, successful NBA career. Despite the fact Zion only missed one game so far in the season, Malone still isn’t satisfied with the adjustments Williamson made to his body going into his second year in the league. The weight is still a problem, and it needs to be addressed ASAP.
Guess what guys, he needs to be averaging 40 minutes a game. You are a 21-22-year-old kid; your ass shouldn’t be getting tired.Karl Malone, Knuckleheads with Quentin Richardson & Darius Miles
Barring injuries, Zion is on pace to play 66 games. He’s averaging 5 more minutes per game compared to his rookie year and is enjoying more significant playing time as the Pelicans’ leading scorer with 23.8 PPG. Williamson is still getting used to the rigors of the NBA and is still far from his ceiling as an NBA player. But for him to even get there, the Pels’ star forward needs to get into better shape.
No one wants to see another potentially great NBA career ruined by injuries. Let’s hope that won’t be the case with Zion Williamson.