clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Zion Williamson: Now The Leading Change Agent In The NBA

He’s just eating the league alive this season

Philadelphia 76ers v New Orleans Pelicans
NEW ORLEANS, LOUISIANA - APRIL 09: Zion Williamson #1 of the New Orleans Pelicans is fouled by Joel Embiid #21 of the Philadelphia 76ers during the third quarter of an NBA game at Smoothie King Center on April 09, 2021 in New Orleans, Louisiana.
Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images

Remember when people were down on Zion Williamson last year (and part of this year too for that matter)?

That’s done a 180.

According to a tweet from StatMuse, the former Duke star is doing this:

“Zion Williamson is averaging 26.5 points on 61.7% shooting this season.

“That’s the most PPG by any player with 60+ FG% in NBA history.

“It’s also the highest FG% by any player with 15+ FGA per game in NBA history.

“A truly historical season.”

It’s pretty amazing but part of it is because it turns out that Stan Van Gundy may be the perfect NBA coach for him.

Van Gundy understands that, above all, Williamson is a ball player. He’s not limited by his size; his size is an imposition on everyone else. He’s increasingly given him the ball and let him create as a guard.

So with Lonzo Ball out against the Philadelphia 76ers Friday night, Van Gundy finally went full Zion and let him play point guard.

That’s a 6-6, 284 lb. point guard, a guy who can take you to the rim whenever he decides to and who can also fillet you with a perfectly delivered pass.

What do you with that? We have a picture with this article of Joel Embiid trying to stop Willamson. He couldn’t. Ben Simmons tried to guard him. He couldn't do it. Guys like Russell Westbrook, DeAaaron Fox and Ja Morant aren't nearly strong enough.

Williamson is rapidly redefining the NBA, obliterating any remaining line between center and point guard, between power forward and wing. Next up: defenses will be designed especially to stop him and, as we’ve seen in the past, rules may be changed too. That’s how big of an impact he’s having.