Zion Williamson had a breakout season for the New Orleans Pelicans in his first full season in the NBA.
He averaged 27 points per game on historic efficiency and finished 8th overall in the NBA in scoring. He was the league’s best post scorer at age 20, so even though the season was frustrating, there is reason to be excited about the future.
The crazy thing is that there are a couple of factors working in Zion Williamson’s favor that will make it possible for him to win a scoring title as soon as next season. Here’s how.
Zion Williamson is going to get more shots
If you look at the top ten scorers in the NBA, Zion finished 8th even though he had the fewest shot attempts per game of the whole group.
Zion only took 17 shots per game, compared to guys like Steph Curry (21.7) and Bradley Beal (23), the NBA’s top two in scoring.
If the Pelicans can figure out a way to get Zion closer to 20 shots per game, that alone might be enough to get him to a scoring title, as he hit 61.1 percent of his shots, which is easily the highest in the top ten.
When it comes to Zion Williamson, more shots equals more points, so the Pels will try to get him more.
Zion Williamson will shoot more free throws
A lot was made of Zion’s late-season injury that David Griffin blamed on officials who allowed Zion to be mauled in the paint with impunity.
Whether you agree with him or not, the league would certainly have liked Zion to finish the season healthy and have a shot at the play-in games.
The league will take a look at this in the offseason and we might see Zion get a lot more calls as referees try to adjust to officiating a guy who is stronger than everyone else.
Zion may end up leading the league in free throw attempts, and I think it is fair to assume he’ll improve a little from his 69.8 percent average, and if those two things happen, it could lead to an extra 4-5 points per game.
It’s scary to think that Zion is going to get better, but he is ,and if he gets more shots and free-throw attempts next season, he’ll be in the running for the scoring title.