Zion Williamson has been in the center of media attention ever since we saw him dunking everything and over everyone in his high school games. The explosive prospect is proving he is the real deal, smashing the expectations of a #1 pick already in his 2nd season.
He has been averaging 24.3 points, 6.8 rebounds, and 2.9 assists per game, all while shooting an astonishing 61.3 % from the field. His New Orleans Pelicans have played under their expectations, sitting 12th in the Western Conference standings with an 11-14 record. Still, Zion has been very impressive, showing potential for greatness.
His teammates Steven Adams and JJ Redick were talking on Redick’s podcast The Old Man and the Three, as Redick asked Adams about playing against Zion last season when Adams was with the Thunder:
“It’s ridiculous how fast he moves for that size. That’s one thing. Then it was just the ability of once he gets to a spot, his adjustment in the air, after any sort of contact or whatever, and the touch on top of it, it’s just ridiculous…It was awesome. I really actually enjoyed playing against him because it was just one of those puzzles bro, just trying to like figure out how do I stop this guy.”Steven Adams, via The Old Man and The Three
This season Adams joined Zion in New Orleans as they formed possibly the strongest frontcourt in the whole NBA. It’s safe to say Adams is impressed with his new teammate:
“It’s also like the appreciation for just the raw athlete. One is like the raw athlete, where you are just wow, that’s like ridiculous. And on top of that, it’s like how much talent he has that just blends well together. He’s got really got hands, ball-handling, the soft touch, that’s awesome, bro, you just have to be impressed…The dude’s insane. Now he’s hitting threes. It’s gotta be awesome, bro. He’s gotta do it all, bro, just like ruin it all. Just do everything, mate, like bloody hell. Just do it all, freaking awesome.”Steven Adams, via The Old Man and The Three
Reddick and Adams are confirming what we all see, and that’s that Zion’s game is improving and expanding at a surprising pace. We all knew he is an athletic phenom and one of the strongest guys in the NBA. But when you see, he has a sense for the game, solid ball-handling, and jump shooting. It brings a potential of an elite point forward in the making.
Personally, I see shades of the great Charles Barkley in Zion, as he could be an all-time great if he continues playing this way. Hopefully, injuries avoid him, and we get to see the best out of Zion Williamson in his career.