Pelicans coach Alvin Gentry promises to give Zion Williamson the ball more
In the New Orleans Pelicans’ most recent game, a 117-109 loss to the Houston Rockets, 2019 No.1 overall pick Zion Williamson shot 8-14 from the floor but also went through multiple stretches where he wouldn’t touch the ball on offense. Now, head coach Alvin Gentry promises to fix that.
“We didn’t execute and we didn’t do what we were supposed to do,” Gentry said, per Andrew Lopez of ESPN. “Being said, Zion can’t go four minutes without touching the basketball and that’s on me. That’s something that I’ve got to make sure that will never happen again. So I take responsibility for that. And if we’re not gonna give it to him and not gonna execute, then we gotta have different people in the game. That’s on me also.”
Gentry, now in his fifth year coaching the Pelicans, has received flak from fans and media for not playing Williamson enough minutes despite his incredible efficiency.
The 6-foot-6, 285-pound forward out of Duke sat out for the first half of the season due to a knee injury that required surgery. New Orleans’ top selection finally made his NBA regular season debut on Jan. 22 against the San Antonio Spurs.
Despite missing the team’s first 44 games, the rookie has consistently put on a show since. In his first five NBA games, Williamson is averaging 19.2 points and 7.8 rebounds per game on an incredible 62.5 percent shooting from the field.
Zion Williamson’s play becomes even more impressive when considering the highly touted rookie is playing just 25.0 minutes a contest. In the six games that he has has played, he is attempting 13 shots per game while the team has gone 3-3 in that time.