Zion Williamson 1st Since Michael Jordan to Score 2K Points Before 80th Game

Tyler Conway@jtylerconwayFeatured ColumnistApril 25, 2021

New Orleans Pelicans forward Zion Williamson (1) dunks after gettin an alley-oop pass during the first half of the team's NBA basketball game against the Orlando Magic, Thursday, April 22, 2021, in Orlando, Fla. (AP Photo/Phelan M. Ebenhack)
Phelan M. Ebenhack/Associated Press

Zion Williamson became the first NBA player since Michael Jordan to score 2,000 career points before his 80th game in Saturday's 110-108 loss to the San Antonio Spurs.

Williamson needed 79 games to reach the 2,000-point barrier, which is tied for the 10th-fewest in NBA history. Of the 11 other players in NBA history to reach 2,000 points before 80 games played, only one has not made the Hall of Fame.

Williamson has emerged as one of the NBA's most dominant forces this season, averaging 26.9 points, 7.2 rebounds and 3.6 assists. He's shooting 61.8 percent overall and averaging 20.3 points in the paint per game.

"Zion is a once-in-a-lifetime player," Pelicans guard Lonzo Ball told reporters in March. "He can do a lot of different things on the court. He can definitely score in the post. But he's also very fluid with the ball up top. We are using that to our advantage this year."

The only barrier to Williamson's future domination may be injuries. He missed nearly his entire rookie season in 2019-20 because of a knee injury and suffered several ailments during his prep and college career.

Fully healthy throughout the 2020-21 campaign, Williamson has been every bit the superstar many expected him to be coming out of Duke.


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