CHICAGO — It didn’t take lengthy for Zion Williamson to make an enduring affect on the NBA Emerging Stars Problem on Friday evening.
The New Orleans Pelicans rookie megastar stuck a number of highlight-reel alley-oops that left the gang in awe in a while earlier than halftime.
The dunks additionally perceived to briefly harm some apparatus within the procedure.
After an alley-oop connection from Memphis Grizzlies guard Ja Morant on the 1:34 mark of the second one quarter, the backboard used to be visibly shaking. By the point Trae Younger discovered Williamson for any other thunderous slam with 1:09 final, the backboard wasn’t handiest shaking — it used to be left tilted.
Williamson then caught a between-the-legs alley-oop from Morant to ship the gang right into a frenzy. Because the groups went into halftime following a Luka Doncic half-court 3-pointer with one second left, the backboard used to be nonetheless tilted.
The backboard used to be readjusted at halftime by means of Spaulding, an individual acquainted with the location instructed USA TODAY Sports activities. They have been granted anonymity as a result of they weren’t approved to talk at the topic.
Williamson, whose dimension (6-6, 285 lbs) and tool helped make him the No. 1 pick out remaining summer time, completed with 14 issues in the US’ 151-131 win over Doncic’s Global group.
Williamson didn’t understand he bent the backboard, he instructed newshounds after the sport. “Under no circumstances,” Williamson mentioned.
“After we went into halftime my teammates have been telling me about it.”
Younger likewise used to be surprised. “Did he? That’s loopy,” Younger mentioned when instructed of the backboard’s plight.
“That is more than likely now not the primary backboard he is performed that to.”
Apply Scott Gleeson on Twitter @ScottMGleeson.