Pelicans’ Zion Williamson Opens Up About Former College Teammate and Knicks’ Guard RJ Barrett

Published 04/18/2021, 3:30 PM EDT
Jan 29, 2021; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA; New Orleans Pelicans forward Zion Williamson (1) controls the ball against the Milwaukee Bucks during the second quarter at the Smoothie King Center. Mandatory Credit: Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports


Zion Williamson has been one of the most explosive young players in the NBA. While the Pelicans have struggled this year, Zion is having one of the best sophomore years the league has ever seen.

In the 51 games he has played so far, Zion is averaging an insane 26.7 points, 7.1 rebounds, and 3.6 assists per game. He has been pretty efficient from the floor too, making 61.5% of his shots.

Williamson is already showing his potential as a superstar talent, but he still has a long way to go. If he continues to progress the way he has, he will be the face of the league in no time.

Zion Williamson speaks about former teammate RJ Barrett

While he might be dominating the league now, Zion did play a year in college. Playing for Duke Blue Devils, Zion has had his fair share of quality teammates. One of them was Knicks’ guard, RJ Barrett.

The Barrett and Zion duo was absolutely terrifying for other defenses and certainly left their mark in college basketball. Barret and Zion finally faced off against each other recently, as the Knicks ousted the Pelicans, 116-106. In a recent interview with ESPN’s Malika Andrews, the 20-year-old spoke about his former teammate and how he has progressed in the league so far.

Williamson said, “I mean let me give an honest answer uh in the end of the day I’m happy for him uh it was nice seeing him out on the court because that was my first time actually getting to play against him but it’s like my mom taught me that’s nice enough for him but I got my own business to handle over here.”

While Zion has been in the spotlight for the majority of his career, Barrett’s progression in the league has certainly been slept on so far. Despite being the third overall pick, RJ did not have a blistering rookie year like some of his peers.

Mar 13, 2021; Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, USA; New York Knicks guard RJ Barrett (9) shoots as Oklahoma City Thunder guard Theo Maledon (11) defends during the second half at Chesapeake Energy Arena. Mandatory Credit: Alonzo Adams-USA TODAY Sports

However, he has been truly transformed into a valuable starter for the Knicks. Coach Tibbs has been absolutely crucial for the same. Playing as the primary guard for the team, he is the second most used player in the roster.

Both Zion and Barrett have certainly cemented themselves as key players for both teams. It will be interesting to see how their careers progress.

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Aditya Mohapatra

731 articles

Aditya Mohapatra is a sports enthusiast who primarily covers the NBA for EssentiallySports. Having graduated in Mass Communication, he has prior experience in writing for ABP News, and has been writing for EssentiallySports since November 2020. This die-hard Los Angeles Lakers fan feels that LeBron James is the best thing to have ever happened to the NBA, and will hold a healthy debate with anyone suggesting otherwise.

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