Ever since the moment they drafted him with the first overall pick in the 2019 NBA Draft, Zion Williamson has been a member of the New Orleans Pelicans. However, if the source of one prominent media member is correct, that may not be the case after the end of this week.
That prominent media member is none other than Bill Simmons, CEO of The Ringer and host of “The Bill Simmons Podcast.” On Sunday, Simmons used his podcasting platform to share some information he got regarding the whole Williamson fiasco from a trusted source of his.
"“The Zion thing is a real, real, real subplot,” Bill Simmons said on The Bill Simmons Podcast. “I had somebody tell me yesterday that I trust that he will not be on [the New Orleans Pelicans] Thursday. I was like, ‘Really? I haven’t heard that.’ And he was like, ‘You watch.’ So, there you go on that.”"
Last week, it was reported that the Pelicans had their eye on moving up in the draft in order to select highly-coveted G League Ignite guard Scoot Henderson. This, coupled with reports that the team may be willing to trade Williamson to make this deal happen, have had the entire NBA world monitoring this situation closely.
To acquire Henderson, the Pelicans are going to have to do business with either the Charlotte Hornets or Portland Trail Blazers, as they own the second and third overall pick in the draft (the place where Henderson is likely to go). But if Kevin O’Connor’s (also of The Ringer) reporting is any indication, it seems more likely that a Williamson-centered deal gets done with the latter than the former.
"“FanDuel TV’s Shams Charania reported last week that the Hornets prefer Ingram, who has had some health issues of his own,” O’Connor wrote on Monday. “But he’s played in 72.5 percent of total possible games with the Pelicans and he averaged 27-6-6 in a playoff series. Most reports have said the Hornets favor the forward Miller over Henderson, so if that’s true it would make sense they’d want a more advanced version of Miller in Ingram, who will still only be 25 years old next season. As for Portland, my sense from league sources is that Portland’s preference is Williamson, who’d be a weapon in the pick-and-roll and in handoffs alongside Damian Lillard (should he stick around) and Shaedon Sharpe.”"
Has Williamson really played his last game with the Pelicans? Every star player goes through rumors like these at one point or another, but this sure feels like it’s the closest we’ve come to seeing a Williamson trade transpire.
We’ll soon find out just how reliable Simmons’ source is.