New Orleans Pelicans star Zion Williamson provides interesting injury update

New Orleans Pelicans star Zion Williamson says it's realistic he could return.

New Orleans Pelicans, Zion Williamson
Credit: Stephen Lew-USA TODAY Sports

New Orleans Pelicans star forward Zion Williamson suffered a hamstring injury late in their NBA Play-In Tournament loss to the Los Angeles Lakers last week.

Williamson had been dominating the Lakers to the tune of 40 points before pulling up lame late in the fourth quarter. He was beyond frustrated about yet another injury in a young career that has been defined by them.

Heading into New Oleans’ first-round NBA Playoff series against the Oklahoma City Thunder this past weekend, indications were that Williamson would be out for the remainder of the postseason.

While still possible, the former No. 1 pick provided an interesting injury update ahead of Game 2 against Oklahoma City on Wednesday.

Williamson told reporters that it’s a “realistic chance” he’ll be able to return at some point in the playoffs, per Andrew Lopez of ESPN.

This comes on the heels of Pelicans general manager David Griffin telling reporters that Williamson will be evaluated again in two weeks as he rehabs from a hamstring strain.

“As everyone knows Zion Williamson is out. And he’s out with a left hamstring strain. Well, David Griffin told me that the performance team has a plan in place, but it’s not something that we’ll likely see developing in view of the public eye.

He said that Zion is doing everything that the medical team asks of him, and that his diligence with performance is unrecognizable from earlier. Remember guys, he’s being re-evaluated in about two weeks, which puts that date around May 1st. And then from that point, they’ll have to see where he is.”

David Griffin on Zion Williamson injury, via Pelican Brief

Related: Updated NBA Playoffs and Finals predictions

Zion Williamson return will depend on New Orleans Pelicans NBA Playoff success

Zion Williamson
Credit: Stephen Lew-USA TODAY Sports

New Orleans dropped its opener against Oklahoma City on Sunday by the score of 94-92. It was a hard-fought game between the No. 1 seed and No. 8 seed. Game 2 is set to tip off from OKC on Wednesday.

While these updates are seemingly positive when it comes to Williamson, it’s going to be all about how far the Pelicans advance. He’s out for the first round of the NBA Playoffs. If New Orleans were to advance to the conference semifinals, there is a decent chance Williamson will return.

  • Zion Williamson stats (2023-24): 22.9 PPG, 5.8 RPG, 5.0 APG, 57% shooting

Prior to a rather injury-free 2023-24 season, injuries had defined Williamson’s career since the Pelicans made him the No. 1 pick out of Duke in the 2019 NBA Draft.

The 6-foot-6 forward suited up in just 114 games during his first four NBA seasons. That included missing the entire 2021-22 campaign with a foot injury.

Related: Why the New Orleans Pelicans should trade Zion Williamson this summer

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