New Orleans Pelicans star Zion Williamson’s journey back from injury hasn’t been easy, and all the criticisms he has received during his recovery made things even more difficult.

Williamson admitted as much in his recent interview with GQ Magazine, revealing his frustration and pain about his right foot injury and the rehab journey he had to take in order to play again.

“It’s been a lot. I can sit here and explain it, but nobody will really be able to feel it the way I did,” Williamson shared. “My foot was broken and I couldn’t magically heal it. It hurt, because I love the game of basketball. But because of it I was experiencing hate and pain from people I don’t know every day, and it started to wear on me.”

Zion Williamson suffered a fracture in his right foot before the 2021-22 season started, but there was initial belief he would still be able to return during the campaign. Of course things didn’t go as planned and the athletic forward sat out the whole year.

As he was recovering, though, the Pelicans superstar received a ton of hate and backlash. A lot has been said about his physique, with many pointing out that he was out of shape and too big for his own good.

Clearly, all the negative talks took a toll on Williamson. Fortunately, he was able to go through it. Now he is close to getting back to his full strength, as proven by the latest videos of him showing his usual bounce when dunking.