Duke's Zion Williamson on Playing for Knicks: '41 Games Here Wouldn't Be so Bad'

Kyle Newport@@KyleNewportFeatured ColumnistDecember 21, 2018

NEW YORK, NY - DECEMBER 20: Zion Williamson #1 of the Duke Blue Devils reacts against the Texas Tech Red Raiders in the first half at Madison Square Garden on December 20, 2018 in New York City. (Photo by Lance King/Getty Images)
Lance King/Getty Images

Zion Williamson played at Madison Square Garden for the first time Thursday night with the Duke Blue Devils, and if the Mecca of Basketball turns out to be his home arena in the NBA, he wouldn't be disappointed.

Williamson was asked about the possibility of being drafted by the New York Knicks after a 69-58 victory over No. 12 Texas Tech, and he said he was open to playing at MSG, per The Athletic's Michael Scotto:

Michael Scotto @MikeAScotto

Zion Williamson on Knicks: I think this is RJ's team. RJ, u wanna play for the Knicks? If they draft me, I'd love to play for the Knicks. I don't really care where I go. Just the experience of being in the NBA whoever wants me & whoever sees the most in me that's where I wanna be https://t.co/HHYlKLlKK1

He continued, per ESPN's Jeff Borzello:

"Forty-one games at the Garden, I mean, it would probably be incredible. This is the Garden. A lot of greats have come through here. My favorite great to come through here was probably Bernard King because my stepdad talked about him a lot, how he just put the ball in the basket. ... I had to go watch his highlights. He could really score the basketball. He was incredible how he did it. ... Playing 41 games here wouldn't be so bad."

Considering the 6'7", 285-pound freshman is No. 1 on Jonathan Wasserman's 2019 big board at B/R, Knicks fans of course wouldn't mind having him suit up for their team.

New York (9-24) owns the fifth-worst record in the NBA, two games in the win column ahead of the Atlanta Hawks (7-23) and Chicago Bulls (7-25).

For Williamson, it was a solid Garden debut, even though he fouled out. He put up 17 points and 13 rebounds and went 9-of-10 from the line in 25 minutes.

Williamson has made a name for himself by throwing down jaw-dropping dunks, dating back to his high school days. However, he said he takes pride on the defensive end as well:

Michael Scotto @MikeAScotto

Zion Williamson on defense: Growing up my favorite player was Michael Jordan. For those who may just think Michael Jordan was an offensive player he was a great defender and won DPOY. I'm just striving to be like that. As well as I am on offense, I want to be the same on defense. https://t.co/gydBfkEo6U

While the internet loves to make comparisons, the 18-year-old said he is just trying to play his game:

Michael Scotto @MikeAScotto

Zion Williamson was asked if there is a player in the NBA he thinks he can be like. He replied, "Not really. I'm just trying to be the first Zion really." https://t.co/CxPrd1N6W8

It won't be long before Williamson hears his name called on draft night in June. But for now, his focus will be on trying to help 11-1 Duke cut down the nets in April.


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