Basketball fans have been watching video of Zion Williamson since he was in high school and of course Duke fans got a close up and personal view of his abilities last year as he regularly stunned us in Cameron.
As fans watched him thunder in for dunks or pounce for steals from guys who never thought he could cover the ground to swipe the ball or watched him dart across the lane for a stunning block of a shot by Virginia’s De’Andre Hunter, we all agreed: there’s never been anyone like him. People who see him play will tell their grandchildren about it. He’s that spectacular of a talent.
After his famous shoe blowout, people argued various things about Williamson, including that he would have to lose weight to play in the NBA.
We weren’t so sure about that because he looks incredibly fit to us - and he is.
But he’s not necessarily sound.
During his rehab from knee surgery, the Pelicans put him through all sorts of tests and he saw lots of specialists. When you read this, the first thing that will blow you away is what they now understand about his unique physique. Weight is not necessarily the main issue although he gained eight pounds in a week before the Pelicans had him stop lifting with the team.
In a week! Can you imagine him as a bodybuilder?
And second, some specialists established that mass isn’t necessarily as big an issue as how the body deals with it.
It’s actually more of a multiplier for three other issues. From the article: “The first three focused on mechanics — how the foot rotates over the course of a jump; how the femur rotates relative to the shin; and the ability to control landing from a jump using the hips.
“The fourth factor, though, could determine the fate for the most exciting NBA prospect in a decade: mass.“
This is the level of science applied to sports that really is amazing. It makes you wonder what people like this would have made of athletes like Jim Brown, Mickey Mantle and Wilt Chamberlain, guys who started out with massive natural abilities that might have been tweaked to unbelievable levels.
This really is an incredible article. You’ll be amazed at what they found out about Williamson’s body and what they plan to do to keep him healthy and playing for as long as possible.