Count former NBA star and current Charlotte Hornets owner Michael Jordan among members of the Zion Williamson fan club.
Jordan, who won six NBA titles as a player with the Chicago Bulls, was named league MVP five times and won an all-time NBA-high 10 scoring titles, saw what he needed to see in only three minutes of Williamson's debut on Wednesday with the New Orleans Pelicans.
That's about how long it took Williamson, the NBA's top draft pick last June, to score 17 of his 22 points in his league debut, a 121-117 home loss to the San Antonio Spurs. He started the game and played 18 minutes.
"What you saw the other night is a taste of what you're going to see going forward," Jordan said. "He's still got a lot to do, but I think his passion for the game is coming through the way that he plays. That's great for the league."
Jordan's comments came in France, where the Hornets lost 116-103 to the Milwaukee Bucks.
Added Jordan, "The NBA is very fortunate to have a talented young man who shows a certain passion about the game. That's something you can't get. You're born with it, and you share it with the rest of the world."
Williamson, whose debut was pushed back by surgery to repair the meniscus on his right knee after an injury in October, also started on Friday night at Denver.
In his one season at Duke, Williamson averaged 22.6 points and 8.9 rebounds while shooting 68 percent from the floor in 33 games. In the preseason for the Pelicans, he averaged 23.3 points and shot 71.4 percent from the floor.
--Field Level Media