Here comes Zion!

The first pick of the 2019 NBA draft was a one and done prospect out of Duke named Zion Williamson. Williamson averaged 22 points, 8 rebounds  and 2 assists for his one season with the Blue Devils. Combine those stats along with Zion’s athletic ability, unbelievable leaping skills, an imposing 6’7 285 pound frame and you have yourself a number one overall draft pick.

After drawing the lucky ball in this years Draft Lottery, it was a foregone conclusion as to who the New Orleans Pelicans would select. However, we must ask ourselves “What If” Zion wound up playing alongside Jaren Jackson Jr. to form a formidable young front court in Memphis or if he had a chance to shine on the biggest stage in the worlds most famous arena as a member of the Knicks?

With the power of modern technology available through NBA 2K19, I was able to bring these scenarios to life via simulation. I utilized six minute long quarters on the pro setting. In each of these match ups, Zion was assigned a starting role as either small or power forward. Shout out Da InfaMous NY for this very accurate creation of Zion Williamson.
Zion Williamson, New Orleans Pelicans

Zanos Versus The Greek Freak

Pelicans vs. Bucks

-Zion had the insurmountable task of going one on one with the reigning NBA MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo.

-Here’s the stat line…
Giannis 28 points 7 rebounds 3 assists

Zion 18 points 8 rebounds 2 assists

-Zion looked impressive but, do not let the stats fool you. He actually went (8-17 field goals). Giannis on the other hand showed why he earned the title of league MVP.  He delivered the most spectacular performance of all of the simulations which I had conducted thus far. Keep in mind he scored 28 points without playing all 24 minutes of the game, unreal!

-Zion displayed great stamina during his time on the court logging 20 out of 24 minutes of eligible playtime.

Note: This was not a good showing for Pelicans Derrick Favors 0 points / 2 rebounds in 15 minutes of play.

The Bucks win 63-54

Zion Williamson, Memphis Grizzlies

Zion Williamson Gives the Jazz a Case of the Blues

Grizzlies vs Jazz

-Zion used this match up to  warm  up for the 2020 NBA Slam Dunk Contest. This included two rim rattling alley oop dunks. Williamson rendered Ed Davis’ offense practically useless. Davis also looked very confused on defense trying to figure out a way to stop Zion.

-Here’s the stat line…

Zion 16 points 10 rebounds 3 assists

Davis 5 points 2 rebounds 1 assists

-The Jazz’s offense played out of tune and out of sync. This game featured the most staggering statistic of all of the simulations which I ran. Utah shot 10-40 from the field! Yes, you read that correctly. That is not a typo.

-The Grizzlies front court which also consists of (Jaren Jackson Jr, Dwight Howard and Jonas Valanciunas) absolutely dominated with 32 points in the paint!

Grizzlies stifle the Jazz by winning 47-24

Zion Williamson, New York Knicks

Zion Leads the charge in a Battle of North Versus South

Knicks vs Mavericks

-Here’s the stat line…

Zion 12 points 7 Rebounds 2 Assists and 1 Block

Porzingis 5 points  6 rebounds 2 blocks

-Aside from showing off his Nike Jumpman’s in in the photo above, Zion had two more highlights in this contest. First, he posterized Dwight Powell and if that was not impressive enough, he blocked a shot of the 7’3 Boban Marjanovic!

-The Knicks overcame a 14 point deficit largely in part due to Zions 4th quarter effort.

-However, Kevin Knox, who finished with 13 points, was named the player of the game.

Note: Boban outshined both Luka Doncic and Kristaps Porzingis with 9 points 4 rebounds 1 assist 1 Steal and a block.

Knicks win 54-44

Fresh off the heels of signing the most lucrative rookie shoe contract ever with the Jordan Jumpman brand, Zion proclaimed that he hopes to spend the rest of his career as a New Orleans Pelican. Only time will tell if that proves to be true. Out of the three scenarios which I simulated which do you feel would have been the best fit for Zion Williamson? I’d like to hear your feedback in the comments section. Stay tuned for the next edition of “What If”.
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