Zion Williamson (standing) to miss start of NBA season, doesn’t have ‘set timeline’ for return to New Orleans Pelicans
Miteri, no. – New Orleans Pelicans striker, Zion WilliamsonHe will miss the start of the regular season with a right foot injury that required off-season surgery, David Griffin, vice president of basketball operations for the Pelicans, said Thursday.
Williamson was examined on Wednesday, and after consulting with Dr. Richard Ferkel and Pelicans team physician Dr. Scott Montgomery, Griffin said doctors were “extremely encouraged” by the bone progression.
However, no “specific timeline” has been set regarding his state of returning to play. Griffin said Williamson will have more tests in two to two and a half weeks and will leave the team from there.
“Everyone’s goal is to get Zion back into the game as quickly as possible,” Griffin said. “Obviously two to two and a half weeks from now, that means he won’t be on the field in the first week of matches. And when he can come back healthy he will be there.”
On a media day September 27, Griffin said Williamson injured his foot before the summer league in the early part of the season, but added at the time that “his schedule should get him back on the field in time for the regular season.”
“I hope to be back for the first game,” Williamson continued. “I would say the first official match.” Griffin said there have been no setbacks in Williamson’s recovery and that nothing has gone wrong either.
“It only takes a certain amount of time for the bones to look the way the doctors want them to,” Griffin said. “This is where our schedule is.”
Griffin said Williamson was allowed to start running and do a one-on-0 on court. But it was not clear when they would specifically authorize him to do more activities.
“Throughout the process, we’re going to move towards that,” Griffin said of Williamson getting to the point where he could play 5v5. “It might be a long time before two and a half weeks that I do. In fact, it’s just one. A function of how things are progressing.”
For first-year Pelicans coach Willie Green, he now has to start the year without Williamson.
“It’s part (of the match),” Green said. “He’s here and he’s making progress, Griff said. But we have to get other players ready, there’s a game on Wednesday against Philadelphia. We just have to be ready.”
How the Pelicans line up on opening night against the Sixers is still under debate. In the first game before the start of the season I played Brandon IngramChoose Green Ingram and Nagy Marshall As a start forward. When asked about playing with Ingram in the power forward, Green mentioned the fluidity of today’s NBA squads.
“I think 3, 4, 2 are interchangeable in the NBA right now,” Green said. “Unless you play certain teams, you play with the Lakers, they might be a little bit bigger. You play Milwaukee, they can put together a big squad. That’s when you really have to think about your starting 4, 3. But against a lot of teams, 3 and 4 players are interchangeable and can that BI play in any of these positions.”
All-Stars Williamson and Ingram were supposed to anchor the Pelican squad with the most shots this season, something that should lighten the load and the number of bodies each player could see on the defensive side of the field. Now, just as the team had to do in Williamson’s rookie season, they will have to start on the right foot without their huge man.
In 2019, Williamson also suffered a pre-season injury that delayed the start of his season. The meniscus in his right knee pushed Williamson’s NBA debut until January 22, 2020.
“It’s clearly not perfect,” Griffin said. “He’s not terribly exhausted either. The idea again is to come back as quickly and safely as possible. I think the way the doctors are handling this gives a lot of confidence that it’s going to be like that. We’d like to not have to deal with that. But we’re happy with the way it is.” It has worked out so far.”