Zion, Come On…
I think I was too laid-back tonight, and I just can’t do that… – Zion W.
Zion Williamson is such a confusing player. Sometimes he looks like prime Shaquille O’Neal and other times he looks like fat James Harden. The New Orleans Pelicans were one of the surprise teams to make it to the semifinals of the NBA In-Season Tournament but clearly weren’t up to the task.
The Lakers blew out the Pelicans 133-89 on a national stage. The worst part was just how bad the Zion Williamson stats were. The former No. 1 pick had just 13 points in the game with a measly two rebounds.
To make matters worse, the 23-year-old Zion was thoroughly outplayed by 38-year-old LeBron James, who had 30 points in just 23 minutes. Look, it’s not always fair to compare players to LeBron because what he’s doing is near superhuman, but come on.
LeBron James being deadass a more explosive athlete at 39 than Zion Williamson is at 23 is killing me
— Josh (@josh2saint) December 8, 2023
Zion is averaging just 22.2 points per game in NBA games this season, which would be the lowest of his career. The problem with Zion is that he doesn’t really seem to taking basketball that seriously. His weight has been a topic of conversation in the past and Charles Barkley put him on blast after the Lakers loss.
“He not in shape. He doesn’t run. He plays the game strictly on talent. He’s kinda like jogging on offense and defense,” Barkley said.
“He’s got two guys on his team that are better players than him and they shouldn’t be.”
Chuck was disappointed in Zion’s play tonight. pic.twitter.com/y3IB3lYoQG
— NBA on TNT (@NBAonTNT) December 8, 2023
Christian Clark of The Times-Picayune dropped some NBA news and reported that the Pelicans have been stressing for Zion to improve his diet and conditioning but he “doesn’t listen.” This is a potential disaster for New Orleans as Zion is in the first year of a five-year contract worth $197 million.
I honestly can’t wrap my head around how Zion Williamson was given millions of dollars and the key to the franchise and still plays like ass, he can’t even get in shape, the bare minimum for an athlete, what a fucking moron
— Cheffin (@NbaExpress1) December 8, 2023
The concern has to be that now that he has money, he’s only going to get lazier. He’s not exactly inspiring confidence. There are times when Zion looks awesome. He still has big-time potential and could be one of the best players in the NBA.
Maybe getting embarrassed on a national stage by a 38-year-old will be enough to kick his ass into gear. For his part, he did acknowledge that he didn’t play his best.
“I got to be better,” Williamson said after the game. “I got to be more aggressive, finding my shot. I got to do more things to get my team going. I think I was too laid-back tonight, and I just can’t do that. And defensively I got to be better.”
Hopefully, Zion will take the right lessons from this embarrassing loss.