Pelicans’ Zion Williamson speaks out on half-court lobs with Lonzo Ball
The Los Angeles Clippers of Chris Paul, Blake Griffin and DeAndre Jordan might have been the original “Lob City” but Lonzo Ball and Zion Williamson are giving that team a run for the money. Ball and Williamson connected on multiple half-court lobs during the New Orleans Pelicans 120-107 win over the Minnesota Timberwolves, something that has become somewhat of a norm for the duo.
Williamson praised Ball for his vision and passing ability, saying he always puts the ball in the perfect spot for Zion to go up and get it:
Pelicans’ Zion Williamson on his half-court lob connections w/ Lonzo Ball: “Even though they’re from so far away, he just puts it on a spot like he’s throwing a close lob from the elbow. He puts in on a perfect spot and I’m just able to get it.” pic.twitter.com/vmJmgi83FS
— Ben Golliver (@BenGolliver) March 8, 2020
Of course, it also helps Ball to have an athletic phenomenon in Williamson, who routinely climbs the ladder for sensational jams.
Pelicans guard Jrue Holiday led all scorers with 37 points, but Ball and Williamson each played their role in the win.
Lonzo finished with 18 points, eight assists and five rebounds. He also continued his hot shooting from beyond the arc, going 4-of-8 from deep. Zion scored 23 points to go along with seven boards.
Williamson’s presence on the floor has had a very tangible impact on Ball, who is beginning to excel at the point guard spot (via Haley O’Shaughnessy of The Ringer):
Paired with Zion, Ball seems to be enjoying himself more. Statistically, the two get along: Since Zion’s debut on January 22, Ball’s production has jumped in almost every category. He’s averaging 2.1 more assists (8.4 per game), 1.2 more rebounds (7.0), and 0.5 more points (12.6) despite 1.5 fewer field goal attempts (10.2). His efficiency has skyrocketed: Ball was hitting 35.5 percent of his shots from deep and 39.0 percent overall before Zion came back to the court; since then those numbers are at 42.7 percent and 44.8 percent.
Zion has indeed seemed to have a positive impact on his teammates. Unfortunately for the Pelicans, it has not resulted in more wins.
New Orleans are still four games back of the Memphis Grizzlies for the eighth and final playoff spot in the Western Conference, and they are losing opportunities to gain ground.
Still, Ball and Williamson continue to offer glimpses of their future together.