Last year’s No. 1 overall pick will finally take the court for his first meaningful game in the NBA
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End of the first half here in Zion Williamson’s NBA debut. Spurs lead 60-51 thanks in large part to LaMarcus Aldridge, who absolutely destroyed Derrick Favors down the stretch there in the second quarter. LMA has 16 points and nine rebounds, and the Spurs are 7-15 from 3. As for Zion, well, he hasn’t done too much. Pels are definitely playing it safe and he’s only played eight minutes. He hasn’t tried to force anything, has one basket, thrown a couple nice passes, has a few turnovers. About what you would expect. Will be interesting to see if he forces the issue a bit more in the second half
Wow DEEP 3 by Bryn Forbes. Spurs are up 53-45 late in the second quarter. They’re 7-of-15 from 3
Brandon Ingram comes up short on a layup. Really tough start for him in this game. He has five points on just 1-of-8 from the field. Will be interesting to see how he adjusts to Zion’s return in the long run. He’s spent the first half of the season dominating the ball at times, and that won’t always be the case moving forward
Here’s Zion’s first bucket if you aren’t able to watch the game:
Williamson checks out after his second stint. He was much more active this time around, and even played a few minutes of small-ball five. Scored his first points and made some nice passes. Only was able to get out and run once though — did see his dynamism on that possession though, as he grabbed a board and motored down the floor before kicking out for an open 3 (which was missed)
43-28 Spurs at the 8:52 mark of the second. Focus has been on Zion since he checked back in, but Spurs have been carving the Pels up on the other end to start the second quarter. 12-4 run to start the frame, and most of them have been easy baskets
Zion tries to roll to the rim and gets called for a charge after running over Derrick White. Crowd erupted into loud boos lol
Zion crashes the offensive glass and then converts a putback for his first NBA points. Good hustle from the rookie
Zion back in the game to start the second quarter
Spurs lead the Pelicans 31-24 at the end of the first quarter in what has been a pretty fun game so far. Zion is 0-1 with 1 assist in 4 minutes. Spurs led by LaMarcus Aldridge (7 points) and Jakob Poeltl (6 points). Derrick Favors has 7 for the Pels, who are 0-8 from 3-point land
The Spurs are actually way down at the bottom of the league in terms of deflections per game (13.6) but watching them it feels like their guards deflect everything out on the perimeter
14-4 run here for the Spurs over the past few minutes as they take a 24-18 lead. Pelicans having a tough time on the offensive end
18-18 here at the 3:46 mark. Seven points and five rebounds for LaMarcus Aldridge early. He’s quietly putting together another strong season, and has been shooting the ball remarkably well. 47.1 percent from 3 in January!
Zion misses his first shot and gets subbed out. Looks like he’s a bust
Sick pass from Zion out of the post to a cutting Ingram for a slam. Comes on the possession after he turned it over. First real involvement for him in the game
Looked like the Pels set up a lob play for Zion on the first possession, but it wasn’t open. They gave him the ball on the block the next two possessions, but he passed out each time. Definitely trying to get him going.
ITS ZION TIME
Raptors take down the Sixers, 107-95. In a bit of a weird coincidence, they had six players score in double figures, and no one else scored. VanVleet led the way with 22 points, while Norman Powell and Pascal Siakam had 18 each. We’re now just about five minutes to tip off for Zion’s debut
We’re only a few minutes away now from the start of Pelicans vs. Spurs and Zion’s first official game action. Just waiting for this Raptors vs. Sixers game to finish up. Been a pretty good one in Toronto but the Raptors are pulling away late. Fred VanVleet is hitting some huge shots down the stretch
As we wait for the game, here’s a look back at Zion’s best plays from the preseason
According to a report from ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, Zion will start and is expected to play about 15-22 minutes
From our own Jasmyn Wimbish, here’s everything you need to know about Zion’s debut, including storylines, how to watch and prop bets:
From our own Brad Botkin, here are five things to watch tonight in Zion’s debut:
Hello, everybody! The day we’ve all been waiting for is here. Tonight, Zion Williamson makes his NBA debut, and we’ll be with you every step of the way
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