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#pounditThursday, December 2, 2021

Has Zion Williamson’s weight become an issue again?

Zion Williamson shooting in practice

Zion Williamson will miss the start of the regular season due to an injury for the second time in his three years in the NBA, and that has once again led to concerns about the former first overall pick’s weight.

Williamson is one of the bulkier players in the NBA. He is listed at 284 pounds, which is quite the build considering he is 6-foot-6. The New Orleans Pelicans announced last week that Williamson will not play at the start of the year, as he is still recovering from foot surgery he underwent during the summer. According to Bleacher Report’s Jake Fischer, Williamson has let his weight get away from him again while rehabbing.

When Williamson traveled to Minnesota recently for the Pelicans’ preseason game against the Timberwolves, NBA personnel were said to be “struck by his heavier appearance.” Sources told Fischer that Williamson weighs over 300 pounds.

“I know Zion at 280, and he was not 280,” one person who saw Williamson said.

Williamson missed several weeks at the start of his rookie season two years ago due to a knee injury. If you remember, there was a report that even Nike — his biggest sponsor — was concerned about his weight. The talk resurfaced during the NBA bubble in Orlando, though Williamson supposedly slimmed down again after that.

The trend is obviously a troubling one. Weight issues and foot injuries tend to go hand-in-hand. That’s why centers and bigger forwards are often worst affected by them.

The Pelicans contradicted themselves recently with their timeline for Williamson’s return. There has been speculation that they could have him on a minutes restriction when he’s cleared, which is something to monitor given that Williamson was reportedly frustrated at one point with how the Pelicans handled one of his injuries.

Photo: Mar 4, 2020; Dallas, Texas, USA; New Orleans Pelicans forward Zion Williamson (1) laughs while warming up before the game against the Dallas Mavericks at American Airlines Center. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

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