Zion Williamson could soon be an MVP candidate

Zion Williamson was the first overall pick in the 2019 NBA draft, but he’s appeared in only 85 games for the New Orleans Pelicans since then.

The big man, who will turn 22 in early July, has dealt with injury problems all three seasons. He is listed at 6-foot-6 and 284 pounds, which is likely too much weight for his frame. However, the star player seems to be in much better shape now and could be a serious candidate for a bounce-back season.

If Williamson, an All-Star in his second season, can stay healthy, only the sky is the limit.

Former NBA player Jalen Rose believes the power forward will have a fantastic season with the Pelicans next year. He also doesn’t think it was right to say he was out of shape when he put up amazing numbers.

“Zion is going to be trending towards All-NBA,” Rose said. “He averaged 27 points on 60 percent shooting (in his second season), and you’re talking about he’s not in shape. … So many players, as their careers progressed, decided getting in shape, eating right and training is the most important thing.

“It looks like Zion has figured that out, and the sky’s the limit for him and his team.”

Zion Williamson’s ceiling is very high

Some fans and analysts already believe the Pelicans big man is a bust, but Williamson still has intriguing potential.

Williamson hasn’t had a chance to show how good he can be. Injuries have limited him to 85 out of a possible 226 regular-season games, and he missed the Pels’ play-in and playoff games last season as well.

There have been glimpses of his skills, however, and he can be a force to be reckoned with. He averaged 27.0 points and 7.2 rebounds per game in his second season, when he played 61 of 72 games.

However, Williamson was criticized for being out of shape for his own good. If he was in shape, he may have spent even more time on the floor.

Williamson missed the first 44 games of his rookie season with a torn meniscus. He missed the final six games of his second season with a fractured ring finger. He then missed all of last season after offseason surgery for a broken foot. He wasn’t cleared for full basketball activities until late last month.


But what-if scenarios aren’t going to do the young star any good. He needs to be in better shape. Williamson could be the next NBA superstar if he stays in shape.

Zion Williamson was compared to Luka Doncic

Luka Doncic is another NBA player who gets criticized for being out of shape. While Doncic has had conditioning issues, the fourth-year player has been an All-Star the past three seasons.

The 23-year-old guard led his Dallas Mavericks to the Western Conference finals this year. He has been one of the most dominant players since entering the league in 2018.

Rose believes that both Doncic and Williamson could be MVP candidates next season, saying:

“When Luka and Zion decide to get in their best shape, they’re going to be flirting with MVP.”

Edited by Joseph Schiefelbein

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