In a game that renewed the NBA, the Pelicans were good from Utah throughout the game, but missed 2 of their last 12 shots and the Jazz came out of the tackle and got their hands on the top. This is not something new for New Orleans, which is considered one of the worst teams in the league in ‘closing games’. In the “Clutch” for the Pelicans, there were 38 games this season that are considered close by the NBA’s determination (less than five points five minutes to go). In those games, New Orleans is the third worst in the league in points (7.2), the third worst in percentage from the field (36.6%) and in addition is in last place in the plus-minus category (2.4-4).
Now imagine New Orleans, a young team with no attempt to “kill games” and tell them – “We are sorry, but your star can not play in the closing minutes, he will watch from the sidelines.” As happened with jazz. You can’t really expect such a young bunch to rise like that in moments of truth. Nor can you expect a fuck to be at his best when he sits in his head in the final minutes, he will not be on the floor.
Tonight (Monday through Tuesday), in New Orleans’ 99-109 victory over the Grizzlies, Zion did play in the closing minutes, returning a win in return. When the score was 93:98 for the Pelicans, the clock showed 03:05 minutes to end the game and a second on the 24th clock, Zion scored an important basket while galloping to the ring with his power. Nearly a minute later the rookie scored another important basket in color, and from a nine-yard two-minute lead, Memphis was no longer able to come back.
🗣 DON’T JUMP WITH ZION pic.twitter.com/XZYS60NH3j
– SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) August 3, 2020
Zion’s quota of minutes has risen to 25, which is a reasonable amount of time on the floor where quite a bit of trouble can be made. Certainly if your name is Zion Williamson. The Pelicans have a 7:11 balance this season when Zion plays at least 25 minutes compared to a 4: 0 balance when the young forward plays under 25 minutes.
Zion, Who recorded 23 points, seven rebounds and five assists, admitted after the game: “I will not lie, it is different for the worse when I am on the bench in the fourth quarter and I have nothing to do to help my team win.” The star shared his feelings after he helped his team in the closing moments and hinted to our coach Alvin Gentry: “I felt alive again. It was just great to be there on the floor and do what I can to help the team win.”
New Orleans coach Alvin Gentry, who enjoys the ability to give Williams more minutes, also commented on his contribution: “I think he played really well in the closing minutes. He’s a huge factor. Huge. It’s great when you have two young players like Williamson and Ingram (24 points) who can “Raising the level. We are trying to find ourselves. Hopefully things start to connect with us.”
The Pelicans’ win over Memphis further mixed power relations in the Wild West, with six teams battling for one playoff ticket.
Zion: 23pts, 7rebs, 5asts
BI: 24pts, 7rebs, 5asts
Grayson: 17pts (5/6 3PT)
– Zion O | Tre jones stan (@dukenba) August 4, 2020