Pelicans’ Zion Williamson matches rookie milestone last held by Michael Jordan
The season of the New Orleans Pelicans might have ultimately ended in disappointment, but they can at least cling onto the fact that rookie sensation Zion Williamson had an outstanding debut campaign. So much so, that the 20-year-old was actually able to (almost) replicate a scoring feat held by none other than the GOAT himself, Michael Jordan.
Williamson’s 22.5 points per game throughout the 24 contests he’s played in during the 2019-20 season is just a couple shy from Jordan’s record as a rookie:
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) August 15, 2020
Zion Williamson’s rookie campaign was mired with injuries, and the phenom was only able to suit up for the Pelicans for a grand total of 24 games. The pandemic-caused hiatus, of course, also played a role in Zion’s shortened campaign.
Nevertheless, he was still able to manage a very impressive scoring record, also considering the fact that for the most part, he was on a strict minutes limit. The first overall pick ended his rookie season with averages of 22.5 points (on 58.3 shooting), 6.3 rebounds, and 2.1 assists in just 27.8 minutes played per contest.
He certainly is not even close to MJ territory yet, but this statistical comparison bodes well for Williamson’s future.
It will be interesting to see what kind of moves the Pelicans front office will make during the offseason. A number of big decisions need to be made, including that of the futures of Brandon Ingram, Jrue Holiday (he has a player option for the 2021-22 season), and Lonzo Ball, who are all entering the final year of their respective contracts next term. It is unclear if New Orleans will manage to give all three guys an extension, but at least we know that they will continue to build around Williamson himself.