Can Zion still win Rookie of the Year if he only plays 40 games?
It seems the NBA world will have to wait for the return of Zion. With news breaking that the rookie sensation will miss further time than his original 6-8 week return timeline. According to TNT’s Kristen Ledlow, Williamson
has turned a corner in his rehab, but the Pelicans are in no rush to see Zion hit the floor.
For good reason, the team is exercising caution with Zion’s NBA debut. Even with the early returns on pieces from the Anthony Davis trade, Zion is the future of the Pelicans franchise. He is a beacon of hope for a floundering organization that has now seen the only two pillars in team history, Chris Paul and Davis, depart for greener pastures. With the team far outside the playoff picture, there is no reason for the team to rush Zion back.
The question remains, in a loaded Western Conference, can Zion be enough of a difference maker in something close to 40 games played to win NBA Rookie of the Year? As the odds stand, Zion is currently still second favorite at +200. In any event, the debut of the high-flying maestro will be a groundbreaking milestone in the NBA season. Zion is already a social media superstar, and every clip of his skills will be watched my millions. With so many eyeballs on the 19-year old’s every move, his star power will instantly thrust him back into the spotlight. Betting on Zion at this point is a calculated risk, but may be worth the gamble come January.
Ja Morant’s strong start saw the gifted point guard steal the top odds for the Rookie of the Year from Zion for the first time. However, Morant will miss at least the next 3 games with a back injury. Morant tumbled into a courtside camera against the Jazz on Friday, and lingering back spasms caused Grizzlies officials to shut him down. Currently listed as week to week, yet another injury at the top of the totem pole, the door is wide open for other candidates to stake their claim for the NBA Rookie of the Year Award. With odds hovering around +175, and his current injury, bettors may want to wait a few weeks to check on Morant’s updated status.
by Nick Holz