The New Orleans Pelicans are 1-12 on the year and sit at the very bottom of the Western Conference.
One big reason for New Orleans’ woes is the continued absence of the team’s star player, Zion Williamson. The 21-year-old has been out of action thus far while recovering from an offseason surgery that nobody even knew about until Media Day.
At the time, Williamson suggested that he was looking to be back in time for the regular season.
Obviously that proved to be false.
This week, new troubling reports emerged about Williamson’s status.
“To my knowledge, he’s not close to really taking the floor,” The Athletic NBA insider Shams Charania said on the Pat McAfee Show. “… They keep pushing back his timeline.”
— Pat McAfee (@PatMcAfeeShow) November 11, 2021
This assessment was corroborated by ESPN NBA insider Brian Windhorst.
There it is — @WindhorstESPN says he believes Zion Williamson’s injury will leave him out of the Pelicans rotation into December
— Eliot Clough (@EliotClough) November 12, 2021
“From what I understand, it’s good news and bad news. The good news is he is working very hard, he’s putting in the sweat equity,” Windhorst said this past week. “He’s getting closer. But he is still weeks away. He will have more scans next week. The hope is that if those scans looked good he would be able to return to full practice. When that happens, I still they’re looking at two-plus weeks. I think we’re headed into December for this.”
Also complicating the situation is recent disturbing footage that has emerged involving Williamson. If the video is any indication, he is clearly far away from being able to return to action.
Scottie Pippen kept it real on Larsa. https://t.co/yRYNac03ry
— Game 7 (@game7__) November 11, 2021
There has been a lot of talk over the past few months about Williamson’s desire to switch to a different squad. Given everything that has been happening, however, it’s hard to see a situation where any team gives up anything of material value for him. Between his nagging injuries, mild petulance, weight concerns and random off-the-court DM “scandals,” he’s just too big of a risk right now.
Hopefully Williamson can get it together at some point. Because if he doesn’t, he’ll go down as one of the biggest busts of his generation.