As we've been saying and linking, Zion Williamson looks like he’s in great shape and as he said, much to his delight, he has no minutes restrictions anymore.
So we’re hoping that we get a lot more games like what we saw in New Orleans’ final pre-season game against the Milwaukee Bucks.
Williamson went off for 31 points on 12-22 from the floor. He also had nine rebounds, two assists, a steal and a block.
What’s great to see though is how he has regained his confidence and quickness. We see it first when Khris Middleton realizes a pass if off - but Williamson realizes it first.
Then he blows by 6-10 DJ Wilson and you can tell from his body language that he’s helpless. It’s almost like watching someone climb in the ring with young Mike Tyson, knowing they didn’t stand a chance.
Then check out the crossover he puts on Torrey Craig at the :41 mark. Again, the defender is helpless. None of these guys can touch him (he also scores over Brook Lopez at the end) - and they know it.
Then check out the stutter step at 1:31, the move to the basket at 1:48, both at the expense of Lopez.
It’s important to mention that Giannis Antetokounmpo didn’t play because he would have been a significant obstacle. However, not every team has a Greek Freak.
And one other thing worth noticing here: Williamson’s past his rookie zeal and appears to have learned an important lesson: he’s conserving his energy. This will pay off for him in a big way as the season grinds on.
Something to mark on your calendar: on December 27th, Williamson and the Pelicans face off against the San Antonio Spurs and new point guard Tre Jones. That should be fun.