A torn right lateral meniscus was revealed after New Orleans Pelicans rookie Zion Williamson had undergone the further evaluation they said he would pertaining to his knee injury issue that crash-landed his hype train. The 6-6, 285 pound forward rookie, after missing the pelicans’ final preseason game on Friday, is set to miss another six-to-eight weeks after going through surgery according to the team’s statement released late Monday afternoon.
A source with good knowledge of the whole situation told USA TODAY that pelicans top pick, Zion Williamson had avoided a major setback. Source’s identity will remain anonymous since the interview about Williamson’s injury was done without the knowledge of authority.
The knee injury, which has brought about a much longer recovery time and process, does not only put a damper on the Pelicans’ season but also on the NBA season since Williamson’s first appearance on Tuesday opener season in Toronto was highly anticipated following an impressive preseason where he averaged 23.3 points and shooting 71.4% in four games from the field.
Williamson’s historical injuries
Also Williamson happens to have an eight months long history of various severe knee injuries. During his freshman season at duke, he sprained his right knee which forced him to miss five games, the Pelicans then decided to sideline him for the remaining summer league games right after he had bruised his left knee during his first summer league games in Las Vegas. Williamson’s debut will have to then wait until Christmas.
The Pelicans growth also now seems to be a bit stunted since Williamson plays a big role in their present and future, and even though the pelicans have a renowned talent for winning games, all the excitement and attention seems to have been ripped right off, crashing their season even before it began. And even though New Orleans is a borderline playoff team in the western conference and without Williamson for about six-to-eight weeks, postseason goals will be much more difficult for them.
Inasmuch as they want him on the court as soon and as much as possible, and which for the pelicans, Williamson means more than one season, his long term health – and we are talking about multiple seasons – given the circumstances, is way more important than two months’ worth of games. New Orleans need to be very cautious since there’s just too much at stake and there doesn’t seem to be any better way around the issue.
People involved in the NBA had wanted to see his first appearance make Tuesday, the must-see since James Played his first ever game in 2003 for Cleveland. This includes networks TNT and ESPN. The New Orleans pelicans are also on national television nine times the first week, including NBA TV.
Zion Williamson will play regardless
Zion Williamson will definitely play, but his absence brings rise to larger questions as to his health in the long run. Speaking of injuries, he sustained a bad bruise on his left knee and as a precaution, was held out of the summer league games, he also got injured on the right knee at Duke and now this! These injuries aren’t so much of a big deal individually but collectively, these might be potential signs of a long term health problem.
For 6-6, 285 pounds, it simply reads that he is quite an explosive man who puts a lot of pressure on his knees which has resulted in lingering health problems in other players. Amar’e Stoudemire and Greg Oden are good examples of players who had knee injuries but still managed to forge a productive career. Then, there’s James who despite his combination of quickness, size and power, has been relatively injury free.
A source with credible and direct knowledge about the situation told USA TODAY SPORTS that in his next to last preseason game, Williamson avoided another major knee injury. This person is anonymous.
Williamson was crafty in his game and showed off his ability to score goals with efficiency and finesse and his powerful dunks. Collectively, he had an impressive preseason. And even though it was just a preseason, he is a significant reason the New Orleans Pelicans should be fun to watch and probably make the playoffs. “His body control is unbelievable” Gentry said of Williamson’s game.