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#pounditSaturday, June 22, 2024

Pelicans coach rips Magic player for diving into Zion Williamson’s legs

Gary Harris diving into Zion Williamson

Even a day later, Willie Green is still stewing about a questionable play against Zion Williamson.

During Wednesday’s game between the New Orleans Pelicans and the Orlando Magic, the Pelicans star Williamson got taken out by Magic guard Gary Harris on a controversial move. While attempting to steal the ball from Williamson in the third quarter, Harris dove into Williamson’s legs, causing Williamson to crash hard to the floor.

The Pelicans head coach Green was infuriated over the play, especially after the officials only gave Harris a common foul. Take a look.

Williamson didn’t appear to suffer any ill effects from the dive but left in the fourth quarter with a finger injury as New Orleans lost 117-108.

Speaking with reporters at practice on Thursday, Green publicly called out Harris for the move.

“They don’t even allow that in football,” said Green, per Christian Clark of the New Orleans Advocate. “I know somebody said [Harris] slipped. When I went back and watched, even when he slipped, he still lunged at Z’s legs.”

“He took him out,” Green added. “It’s the same thing as my intentions may be to go for a block. But if I slap you across the face, they normally give you a flagrant for that.”

Indeed, it was unnecessary for Harris to lunge low on Williamson like that. Though Williamson was making a move to the basket, there was no loose ball, and the halfcourt defense was already set behind Harris.

The 45-31 Magic are known for their very physical brand of defense that sometimes borders on dirty in the eyes of opponents. The Pelicans were also probably especially sore since Brandon Ingram suffered a multi-week injury on a contact play during their last game against the Magic.

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