Zion Williamson, the first pick in the 2019 NBA draft, hasn’t played since the start of the 2021-2022 NBA Season.
Zion was the most hyped athlete since LeBron James. He was seen as the future of the league. A former Duke player, who made a huge impact on and off the court alongside RJ Barrett. Dubbed as the next LeBron James, Zion was a super dominant force. A 6-foot-8, 300-pound power forward with a 45-inch vertical who moves like a guard is an extremely rare species.
But lately, he’s been missing from the limelight.
With his nagging foot injuries, the New Orleans star forward is looking to be in trouble. Before the 2021-2022 season started, Zion suffered a fractured right foot. Williamson then underwent surgery, but he hasn’t played since then.
The Pelicans organization announced that Zion is still doing his rehab, but is away from the team with a strength coach. Since he had foot injuries, he cannot take part in team practices, drills, and scrimmages. Zion’s return is still questionable as of this moment. Photos of Zion spreading across the internet seems to be a guy that is out of shape. Even though they’re just rumors, Zion might really be not in his best form.
Another first pick in the draft who suffered career-ending injuries comes into our minds – Greg Oden.
Oden was considered a bust by some, but he was just really unfortunate. He was picked first overall in 2007, ahead of the great Kevin Durant. Greg Oden was seen as a behemoth of a player. A pure center who can outrebound almost everybody and can also defend. His post-game is also impeccable.
The thing is, Oden was already suffering from knee injuries from the start of his career. It wasn’t long enough ’til his injuries got the best of him, forcing him to retire from the game of basketball.
The resemblance in their careers is uncanny.
Both are first picks in their drafts, who were thought of as the most talented in their group. They were both picked ahead of two future superstars (Kevin Durant and Ja Morant). The two were seen to be unstoppable players in the future. Both are suffering from what seems to be career-ending injuries.
To put things into perspective, in their first three seasons in the league, Oden played in only 82 games. Zion, on the other hand, has only played 85 games.
Honestly, Zion is far better than Oden, in terms of achievements in the NBA. But, as the ratings are going, if Zion does not recover, he’s probably going to become the next Greg Oden. Hopefully, Williamson recovers and comes back even stronger.
Do you think Zion will have the same fate as Oden? Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments below. For more content, stay with us, here at Spiel Times.
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