It’s safe to say that New Orleans Pelicans executive Vice President David Griffin thinks the NBA is not protecting the players enough, or at least Zion Williamson.

Griffin sent a strong message to Adam Silver and Co. after the Pelicans announced Williamson is out indefinitely due to a fractured left ring finger. The Pelicans VP highlighted that Zion suffered the injury because he was “mauled in the paint” throughout the 2020-21 campaign and the officials still don’t call it.

In fact, he even pointed out that several players told Williamson that they would keep hurting him since the referees just ignore it.

“He’s injured because of the open season that there’s been on Zion Williamson in the paint. He has been absolutely mauled in the paint on a regular basis to the point where other players have said to him, ‘I’m going to keep doing this to you’ because they don’t call it,” David Griffin exclaimed, per Chris Clark of

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Williamson is arguably the most important player for the Pelicans, so Griffin’s disappointment is understandable. After all, no team wants their best player to sit out due to injuries.

Also, looking at the stats and Zion’s style of play, a case can be made that he is not getting the calls he deserves. The Pelicans youngster is attempting just 10.2 free throw attempts per game, and while that is already a lot, it is worth noting that he handles the ball a lot and is even averaging 17 shot attempts.

It remains to be seen if Williamson will be able to return this season since the Pelicans will only have five games left after Friday’s contest against the Philadelphia 76ers. It is possible for him to try to come back should they qualify for the play-in tournament, but fans shouldn’t have their hopes up.