NBA video: Zion Williamson seems to be dominating Pelicans practice
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Video: Zion Williamson seems to be dominating Pelicans practice

Zion Williamson, Pelicans

The 22 NBA teams at the “bubble” in Orlando are ramping up preparations with the restart scheduled for the end of this month. It has been a long layoff, and many teams–including the New Orleans Pelicans–have already begun intrasquad scrimmages. Zion Williamson appears to be dominating these scrimmages.

This is just a brief glimpse, but it showcases Williamson’s strengths: attacking the rim and getting downhill. He has a strong take against Pelicans rookie center Jaxson Hayes.

Of course, the 360 dunk is thrown in for good measure.

Zion played just 19 games prior to the suspension of play due to injury, but he made his mark in that small sample size. Williamson was averaging 23.6 points, 6.8 rebounds and 2.2 assists while shooting nearly 59 percent from the field and also averaging eight free-throw attempts per game.

The Pelicans will begin their eight-game stretch in a tie with the Portland Trail Blazers for the ninth seed in the Western Conference. They are 3.5 games back of the Memphis Grizzlies for the eighth seed.

A strong start would put New Orleans in a good position to earn a playoff spot. The Pels face open with a tough slate against the Utah Jazz and Los Angeles Clippers in their first two games.

But then they get a pair of matchups against the Sacramento Kings, a game against the eighth-seeded Memphis Grizzlies, and contests against less-than-stellar squads like the San Antonio Spurs, Orlando Magic and Washington Wizards.

New Orleans will hope Zion’s new physique will result in dominance on the floor, much like he appears to be exhibiting in practice.