You’ve probably caught on that we’re charter members in the Zion Williamson fan club. We watched him for about five minutes on Duke’s trip to Canada and realized almost immediately that while his talent was off the charts, so was his basketball IQ. Later we realized that his emotional intelligence was also quite high. Take away everything else and he’d still be immensely valuable for his desire to make everyone feel included. This was true in high school, where he once gave an MVP trophy to a less talented player who had improved immensely, as it was at Duke, where he made walk-on Mike Buckmire a media star.
Partly that was because he wanted to deflect attention from himself, but his desire to make his team great has always been there and remains today.
So when we saw that he is on JJ Redick’s most recent podcast, we wanted to listen and it’s been great.
The two of them talk about various things with the Pelicans, Brandon Ingram’s All-Star snub, how Williamson honestly sees himself in the scheme of things and what he thinks of that skinny white kid that got sent out to guard him in high school and why he respects him today. It’s worth noting that Williamson remembers his name and that he’d be a high school senior or college freshman about now.
The podcast, for anyone who doesn’t know, is called The Old Man and The Three and Williamson is appropriately (sorry) earnest.
Incidentally, it just occurred to us that, even though he obviously could if he wanted to in this format, and we haven’t finished it yet, we don't think Williamson has cursed. And that led us to think...have we ever heard him curse?
Nope - or not that we can recall anyway. We’re not saying he doesn’t, most people (including us) do, just that he seems to prefer not to.