The Zion Williamson show is officially back. Regardless of whether it was only for a preseason viewing.
The New Orleans Pelicans forward got back to the court Tuesday night, scoring 13 points in a 15-minute performance at the United Center in a 129-125 success over the Chicago Bulls.
Prior on Tuesday, Williamson told his outlook was to deal with this like simply one more preseason game, yet he let it out was difficult to disregard the messages blowing up his phone and showing up via social media about the year-plus he missed.
Williamson showed blazes of his old self during the contest. He drove baseline on Bulls forward Patrick Williams for a slam. He had what a few on the Pelicans bench thought ought to have been a chase-down block just a minute prior in the first quarter on Williams that was controlled goaltending. In any case, he was blazing the abilities that made him a commonly recognized name.
After Tuesday’s game, he said he was most amped up for playing the game he loves. That didn’t mean fans got to see everything the Pelicans have been chipping away at with Williamson back in the fold.
“Couldn’t show them everything,” Williamson said following the victory. “But just kind of getting a feel for it again. Find spots. Picking and choosing where I want to attack. But, I got a new team since the last time I played. I’m still learning some of the guys. Today we were able to click. I feel like if we can do that for the rest of these preseason games, I feel we’ll be in pretty good shape.”
The Pelicans have just five players staying from when Williamson keep going prepared on May 4, 2021, and two of those players – – Brandon Ingram and Kira Lewis Jr. – – missed Tuesday’s preseason game with wounds.
New Orleans has reshaped its roster around Williamson, Ingram and guard CJ McCollum, whom the Pelicans managed for finally year’s trade deadline.
The Pelicans brought in guard Devonte’ Graham to play close by Williamson’s “Point Zion” iteration however rather Graham has sunk into a bench role with this edition of the Pelicans, something he did well against the Bulls with a team-high 21 points and five helps off the bench.
He said he saw a difference when Williamson is in the floor as teams pack the paint to attempt to stop him.
“I thought he looked good too,” Graham said. “I know he was excited to be out there. I know it felt good for him to hear his name in the starting lineup and stuff like that again. It’s just the beginning.”
This was additionally Willie Green’s first opportunity to coach Williamson after Green was gotten preceding last season. It’s Green’s task to attempt to fit Williamson, who arrived at the midpoint of 27.0 points and 7.2 rebounds per game with 61.1% shooting in 2020-21, back into an offense that has a great deal of capability with Ingram, McCollum and Jonas Valanciunas.
“He looked good and he’s just going to continue to get better,” Green said. “That’s what we know about Z. He works at it. He’s a competitor. And you know it doesn’t look like it but he had 13 points, four rebounds in 15 minutes. That’s the type of work he puts in on the floor.”