Zion Williamson
Zion Williamson
20-Year-Old ForwardF
New Orleans Pelicans
2020 Fantasy Outlook
Due to a torn meniscus suffered in the preseason, Williamson's rookie debut was delayed until Jan. 22 against the Spurs. He had a fantastic performance, posting 22 points, seven rebounds and three assists in just 18 minutes. He saw under 30 minutes for the next four performances, but still averaged 18.5 points, 8.0 rebounds and 1.5 assists. For the final 14 games before the hiatus of the season, Williamson saw 31.4 minutes per game and averaged 18.9 points, 6.4 rebounds, 2.3 assists and 1.0 steals. Early in the bubble, Williamson was underwhelming but saved it towards the end by averaging 24.0 points in 24.7 minutes in his final three appearances. As impressive as his rookie campaign was, it didn't translate the same to fantasy. On a per-game basis in eight-category leagues, Williamson ranked just 91st, making strong contributions in points (22.5) and field-goal percentage (58.3), but failing to stand out elsewhere. He was especially harmful in free-throw percentage, taking 7.4 attempts per game but making just 64.0 percent. That said, if Williamson can make marginal improvements across the board while also playing minutes closer to the mid-30s, he should be able to boost his fantasy stock significantly, despite obvious flaws in his game. Read Past Outlooks
$The Pelicans picked up the 2021-22 team option for Williamson in December 2020.
Personal Bio

Zion Lateef Williamson was born in 2000 in Salisbury, North Carolina. Zion's mother Sharonda ran track at Livingstone College, and his stepfather Lee Anderson played basketball at Clemson. Starting at the age of nine, Williamson woke up at 5am daily for basketball training. Williamson attended Spartanburg Day School, a small kindergarten through 12th grade private school in Spartanburg, South Carolina. He could already dunk before the start of his high school freshman season. As a junior, Williamson averaged 36.8 points, 13.0 rebounds, 3.0 steals, and 2.5 blocks per game and led Spartanburg Day to their second straight SCISA Region I-2A title. MaxPreps named Zion National Junior of the Year and also gave him High School All-American First Team honors. Williamson posted similar numbers his senior season and led the Griffins to their third straight title. After the season, he was named South Carolina Mr. Basketball and was runner-up for Mr. Basketball USA. After one season at Duke, Williamson declared for the 2019 NBA Draft and was selected with the first overall pick by the Pelicans. Zion enjoys writing poetry, listening to Jay-Z and watching Naruto. Fans can follow him on Twitter and Instagram (@zionwilliamson).

College/International Summary

Through a combination of jaw-dropping highlights and excellent production, Williamson owned the 2018-19 college basketball season. The 6-foot-7 forward joined R.J. Barrett and Cam Reddish to give Duke the top recruiting class in the nation. Over the season, he averaged 22.6 points (on 68.0 percent shooting), 8.9 rebounds, 2.1 assists, 2.1 steals and 1.8 blocks. He made his debut against Kentucky in the Champions Classic with 28 points and seven rebounds in the win. Williamson had 14 double-doubles, including a season-high 35 points and 10 rebounds in a loss to Syracuse. He missed the last six games of the regular season after suffering a Grade 1 knee sprain against North Carolina in which his shoe ripped. He returned for the ACC Tournament and averaged 27.0 points and 10.0 rebounds to help the Blue Devils take the championship. Duke advanced to the Elite Eight of The Big Dance and Williamson scored at least 23 points in each NCAA Tournament game. Among his many accolades were AP Player of the Year, ACC Player of the Year, and the Naismith Award. After one season with Duke, Williamson declared for the 2019 NBA Draft and was selected with the first overall pick by the New Orleans Pelicans.

Scores first trey in team-high 27
FNew Orleans Pelicans
January 22, 2021
Williamson had 27 points (9-14 FG, 1-1 3Pt, 8-10 FT), three rebounds and two assists in Thursday's 129-118 loss to the Jazz.
ANALYSIS
Williamson entered Thursday's game having shot 0-of-3 from the three-point line in the ongoing season. However, he scored his first and only trey that kickstarted an eventual 27-point night from the sophomore. Williamson has had a fantastic start to the calendar year, averaging 26.4 points on a 62.0 shot percentage across eight games.
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Past Season Summaries
2019

In the summer of 2019, Zion Williamson joined the New Orleans Pelicans via the first overall draft pick. After recovering from a torn meniscus, Williamson made his highly-anticipated rookie debut on Jan. 22 against the Spurs. The No. 1 pick was excellent. He recorded 22 points (8-11 FG, 4-4 3Pt, 2-4 FT), seven rebounds and three assists. Two games later, against Boston, the Duke product had his first of two double-digit rebounding efforts, grabbing a career-high 11 boards (seven offensive), plus 21 points (9-16 FG, 0-1 3Pt, 3-8 FT), two assists and one steal. On Feb. 2, Williamson had his second double-digit rebounding game, totaling 10 boards (five offensive) in addition to 21 points (8-14 FG, 5-7 FT), one assist, one steal and one block. The 6-foot-6 forward posted his first 30-point game Feb. 11 against the Trail Blazers, recording 31 points (10-17 FG, 0-1 3Pt, 11-14 FT), nine rebounds, five assists and one steal in 28 minutes. Williamson scored a career-high 35 points (12-16 FG, 11-13 FT) against the Lakers on Mar. 1, plus had seven rebounds. Before the league went on hiatus due to COVID-19, the rookie averaged 23.6 points, 6.8 rebounds and 2.2 assists in 29.7 minutes per game. When the season resumed July 30 in the Orlando bubble, the Pelicans were one of 22 teams invited to participate. Appearing in five of a possible eight seeding games, Williamson averaged 18.4 points, 4.2 rebounds and 1.8 assists in 20.7 minutes. His best performance in the bubble was Aug. 6 against the Kings, where Williamson recorded 24 points (10-12 FG, 4-7 FT), two rebounds and two assists in 22 minutes. For the season, Williamson appeared and started in 24 of a possible 72 games. In September, Williamson was named to the First Team All-Rookie squad.

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Transaction History
  • June 20, 2019
    Drafted by the New Orleans Pelicans in the 1st round (1st pick) of the 2019 NBA Draft and signed a rookie deal shortly thereafter
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2019 Fantasy Outlook
The Pelicans took no chances during the 2019 NBA Draft, selecting Williamson with the No. 1 overall pick. Williamson enters the league as one of the most-hyped prospects in recent memory -- possibly going as far back as LeBron James in 2003. The Duke one-and-done averaged 22.6 points on an absurd 68.0 percent shooting, 8.9 rebounds, 2.1 assists, and 1.8 blocks in 33 collegiate games. Williamson will be the focal point of the Pelicans' mini-rebuild in the aftermath of trading Anthony Davis to the Lakers. Williamson is a virtual lock to start from Day 1, though what his true position is at the NBA level remains somewhat of a mystery. At 285 pounds, Williamson has the bulk to play center, but his 6-foot-7 frame suggests he's more of a forward. Complicating things further, Williamson's jumpshot is a clear work in progress, and the Pelicans may have to work to put four floor-spacers around him at all times. What we do know is that he has the potential to be one of the best athletes we've ever seen on the hardwood, and there should be no shortage of gravity-defying dunks, blocks and rebounds. From a fantasy perspective, counting on the rookie to have a high floor as a rebounder, defender and efficient inside scorer seems safe. The other things -- volume scoring, passing, three-point shooting, free-throw percentage -- are cloudy.
More Fantasy News
Ties season-high scoring output
FNew Orleans Pelicans
January 20, 2021
Williamson delivered 32 points (14-19 FG, 0-1 3Pt, 4-6 FT), five rebounds, three assists and a steal across 35 minutes in Tuesday's loss at Utah.
ANALYSIS
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Efficient in win
FNew Orleans Pelicans
January 18, 2021
Williamson finished with 31 points (13-15 FG, 5-5 FT), six boards, and two steals across 35 minutes Sunday in the Pelicans' 128-123 win over the Kings.
ANALYSIS
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Double-doubles against Lakers
FNew Orleans Pelicans
January 15, 2021
Williamson (COVID-19 health and safety protocols) posted 21 points (9-19 FG, 3-6 FT), 12 rebounds and four assists in Friday's loss to the Lakers.
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Set to play Friday vs. Lakers
FNew Orleans Pelicans
January 14, 2021
Williamson rejoined the Pelicans on Thursday and will be available for Friday's game against the Lakers, Andrew Lopez of ESPN reports.
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Hopes to miss just one game
FNew Orleans Pelicans
Covid-19
January 13, 2021
Williamson's absence from Wednesday's game is due to an inconclusive COVID-19 test, and the belief is that it will not lead to an extended absence, Andrew Lopez of ESPN reports.
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