F - NOR
Zion Williamson is nearing a five-year rookie max contract extension worth $231 million with the New Orleans Pelicans according to The Athletic’s Shams Charania.
After a season of speculation, Zion Williamson will sign an extension that keeps him in New Orleans through the 2027-28 season. Williamson has averaged 25.7 points, 7 rebounds and 3.2 assists in 85 games across parts of two seasons for the Pelicans. The Duke-product missed all of the 2021-22 season recovering from a foot injury.
According to Pelicans reporter Andrew Lopez, F Zion Williamson (foot) has been medically cleared to return to play.
After suffering a broken bone in the fifth metatarsal of his foot, Williamson missed the entirety of the 2022 basketball season for the Pelicans. Despite a playoff push and on-court drills and workouts, the Pelicans choose not to have their former first-overall selection play. On Thursday, the team and medical staff showed imaging pertaining to Williamson's foot that gave him a clean bill of health and later announced that he has been medically cleared for a return to play in 2022-2023. With injury concerns remaining a large part of the mystery around Williamson, managers can breathe a sigh of relief as there were thoughts around the league that this could be a potential career-defining injury.
Pelicans F Zion Willamson was able to participate in what coach Willie Green called a "controlled scrimmage" Thursday afternoon, as reported by NOLA.com's Christian Clark.
The "scrimmage" was mainly with development coaches but it marked progress in Zion Williamson's return from a fracture in his right foot. Williamson is not expected to return to the court during the regular season but the chance remains for him to return should the Pelicans advance deep enough in the postseason.
Zion Williamson traveled with the Pelicans to Portland on four-game road trip.
This is the first multi-game road trip Williamson has traveled on this season, so that appears to be a step in the right direction. He remains without a timetable to return but as the Pelicans find themselves in the play-in tournament, this will be a situation to keep an eye on if New Orleans finds themselves in the playoffs.
Zion Williamson was spotted working out at the Pelicans practice on Friday.
This is positive news for Williamson fantasy owners and he should be rostered 100% in all season-long formats. This is a critical time for the center to prove his value as the Pelicans have to make a huge decision on extending or trading him by the summer. The Pelicans have 16 games left for the schedule.