On Thursday, Zion Williamson of the New Orleans Pelicans left the NBA’s bubble in Orlando. He did so to tend to an urgent medical issue related to his family.
The organization stated that Williamson intends to return to Orlando for the remainder of the season. Yet, they were unsure of the exact date of his return and if he’d miss any games. After Thursday evening’s practice head coach Alvin Gentry stated “Obviously, right now, we’re not concerned about the basketball part for him. We’re just concerned about his family.”
When Williamson does return to central Florida he will have to quarantine for at least four days. This period may be much longer if Williamson doesn’t follow the league’s safety repercussions while gone. One of which is getting tested for Coronavirus daily. NBA spokesman Tim Frank stated, “Once we learn more about Zion’s specific circumstances, we will determine his re-entry protocol based on our rules,.”
The NBA season will resume for the Pelicans on July 30. They will play the Utah Jazz that evening followed by a game against the Los Angeles Lakers two days later.
Pelicans Executive Vice President of Basketball Operations David Griffin stated “We fully support Zion’s decision to leave the NBA campus to be with his family and out of respect for the Williamson family, we will have no further comment at this time.”
The Statistics: The Pelicans With Zion Williamson vs. the Pelicans Without Zion Williamson
Williamson missed the first 44 games of the NBA season for the Pelicans due to a preseason knee injury. During that stretch, the team went a combined 17-27 and endured a 13-game losing streak.
Upon Williamson’s return, the team has gone 11-9. During that time span, Williamson has averaged 23.6 points and 6.8 total rebounds per game.
Losing Williamson would be a huge blow for a team that is fighting for the Western Conference’s final playoff spot.
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