Zion Williamson is single-handily the most-see, up-and-coming superstar that the NBA has today. From becoming a viral high school sensation out of South Carolina to proving it wasn’t all hype with one of the greatest and most entertaining one-and-done seasons, we will ever see coming out of Duke.
He may have encountered some bumps in the road fighting multiple injuries, including a broken foot that prevented him from playing at all last year. However, through five games of his comeback season, Williamson has proven that the talent is still there and that he’s going to be one of the best players in the League for years to come.
CJ ➡️ Zion pic.twitter.com/1pV3p974k4— New Orleans Pelicans (@PelicansNBA) November 3, 2022
After the Lakers beat the Pelicans 120-117, LeBron James (20 points, 10 rebounds, eight assists) was full of praise for Williamson. The former Duke Blue Devil scored a team-high 27 points, grabbed five rebounds, and dished out seven dimes to his teammates. The four-time MVP believes that Williamson “is on the verge of being great” and that his performance on Tuesday “showed why he’s gonna be who he’s gonna be.”
“Zion is on the verge of being great — he’s going to be great in this League for a long time. Tonight he showed why he’s gonna be who he’s gonna be.”
"Zion is on the verge of being great, and he's going to be great in this league for a long time…"— NBA (@NBA) November 3, 2022
LeBron James on Zion Williamson after their battle in the Lakers' OT win! pic.twitter.com/jcXEL8AAmB
James said that Williamson is the type of talent the League has “never seen before,” while comparing his physical talent — “his size, his spend, high athleticism” — to NBA legends like Charles Barkley, Shaquille O’Neal, and Giannis Antetokounmpo.
“He’s in great shape right now — a great talent, someone we’ve never seen,” James said of Williamson, per Sporting News. “We’ve never seen a talent of his size, his speed, high athleticism — just like Giannis. Just like a (Charles) Barkley or Shaq (O’Neal). There’s certain talents in our League that you’ve never seen before.”
Lakers’ LeBron James on Pelicans’ Zion Williamson: “He’s in great shape right now… We’ve never seen a talent of his size, his speed, his athleticism. Just like a Giannis. Just like a Barkley or Shaq. There’s certain talents in our league that you’ve never seen before.” pic.twitter.com/JmQXeCs1VR— Ben Golliver (@BenGolliver) November 3, 2022
He also said guarding Williamson and trying to prevent him from going to the rim with his dominant left hand is comparable to saying the same about other tough-to-guard lefties like Manu Ginobli or Lamar Odom.
“It’s so funny when you hear people say, ‘stop him from going left’ … It’s the same thing I heard for so many years with (Manu) Ginobili — Lamar Odom — When you’re great, it doesn’t matter what you do, they’re going to figure out a way.”
Zion 💪💪💪 pic.twitter.com/ex7KmFc0K4— New Orleans Pelicans (@PelicansNBA) November 3, 2022
For the season, Williamson is averaging 22.8 points, 7.4 rebounds, and 4.2 assists per game on 50.5 percent shooting from the field while playing 31.2 minutes per contest.