Zion Williamson’s time off was clearly not wasted as the New Orleans Pelicans forward has emerged from quarantine in fantastic shape. Williamson looks significantly more ripped and is being compared to the Batman character Bane from the 2012 movie “The Dark Knight Rises.”
Williamson and his increasing “Bane” like muscle mass entered the NBA bubble looking stronger than before and he is teasing some significant new additions to his game.
He received a special exception from the NBA to continue to rehab his torn meniscus at the Pelicans facilitates during the quarantine. During the time off Williamson worked out with his stepdad, Lee Anderson, when he wasn’t rehabbing with Pelicans staffers.
Williamson told reporters on Friday:
“It just felt like I was 5 years old again,” Williamson said Friday. “Just went back to square one, tried to get my body where it needs to be, get my fundamentals back to square one and start from there. So yeah, it was just like starting over at 5 again. It was a great process to learn it all over.”
“Yeah, I think there are going to be parts of my game that you didn’t see before that you’ll see when we start playing,” Williamson said.
Head coach Alvin Gentry said Williamson “looked great” at the team’s first full practice in Florida. He went on to commended his conditioning and improvements.
“He’s made a lot of strides in his shooting, I think. Although we weren’t together, he did a lot to improve his game,” Gentry said, via ESPN.
The MIGHTY Line
Entering the NBA restart, the Pelicans are 3.5 games back of the 8th seed Memphis Grizzlies. The Pelicans will need to go on a major run in the bubble in order for them to have the opportunity to get beat by LeBron James and the Los Angeles Lakers in the first round of the NBA playoffs.
As we all know, Adam Silver and the NBA are masters of creating buzz which is why the first regular same game from the bubble will feature the Pelicans vs the Jazz. Clearly, the NBA wants everyone to watch Williamson light-it-up in his first game back from quarantine. The reality is the NBA, members of the unbiased and biased media and fans around the globe would love to see a Williamson vs LeBron showdown in the first round of the playoffs.
Look the Pelicans have enough talent to make a run at the 8th seed and if Williamson’s game has actually gotten better then this will be an extremely entertaining run to the playoffs which could be a great ending to the first chapter of Zion’s future biography.
I’m sure the chapter would include something like “I remember the time I missed the first 45 games of my career, then was forced to go into quarantine for 4 months and reemerged strong, faster and better as I led my team into the playoffs after being down by 3.5 games with just 8 games to play.” Now that would be a great end to the first chapter of Williamson’s book, plus the ratings would be huge for the NBA.