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Zion Hypometer: 538.com Quantifies

It’s still pre-season but what he’s doing is epic. Don’t miss the shot chart.

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NBA: Preseason-Utah Jazz at New Orleans Pelicans
 Oct 11, 2019; New Orleans, LA, USA; New Orleans Pelicans forward Zion Williamson (1) is fouled by Utah Jazz forward Royce O’Neale (left) while shooting in the second half at the Smoothie King Center. 
Chuck Cook-USA TODAY Sports

Zion Williamson’s off the chart pre-season performance has stunned a lot of people. Over at Nate Silver’s state site 538.com takes a good look at what he’s done and terms it historic.

One of the best things about is the shot chart which it rightly terms historic. People are going to have to evolve different ideas about how to defend him, somewhat like the Jordan Rules Chuck Daly put in place for the Detroit Pistons.

Unlike Jordan though, Williamson comes into the NBA as perhaps the strongest player in the league.

Actually that’s a great question: who’s stronger? LeBron James might be. Some would argue for Steven Adams but Adams can’t hope to match Williamson’s explosiveness. The list at the top is short and even shorter when you pair it with athleticism.

A lot of people are conceding Rookie of the Year already which is certainly premature. He could have a phenomenal year and still not win the ROY for various reasons including injury, being disliked by the voters for whatever reason and someone else having a great year too.

RJ Barrett is already showing signs of competing for that honor but keep an eye on Denver’s Michael Porter too. He missed almost his entire freshman season and was held out last year by Denver as well. It seems a long time ago that he and Marvin Bagley were contending for top player in high school but when you see him play now, healthy again, he’s a beautiful player.