Zion Williamson shoots a layup vs. New York

Pelicans practice report presented by HUB International: Willie Green says Zion ‘progressing, running’

As Willie Green spoke to the media after Tuesday’s practice, behind him was a pleasant sight for anyone involved with the New Orleans Pelicans: Zion Williamson working with a trainer on the Ochsner Sports Performance Center court. Green said Williamson remains scheduled to have scans done on his right foot later this week or next week and that the All-Star forward is making positive steps.

“You can see he is progressing and doing more and more on the floor,” Green said, motioning to where Williamson was doing light physical activity. “Once he has his latest round of scans, then we’ll have a clearer picture of where we go from here. But he’s getting better, he’s progressing, he’s on the floor now, running, doing a lot more. We’ll have an update soon.”

Asked if Williamson is able to run in drills, Green responded, “He can, but he’s just not full throttle in anything he’s doing in drills yet. (After his scans) hopefully we’ll be able to ramp him up even more after that.”

While trying to compete without Williamson’s scoring punch, it’s been critical for New Orleans to play tight defense in order to stay in games. After allowing 117 and 128 points in their first two games, the Pelicans held Minnesota below 100 points in consecutive matchups, including a 107-98 victory Monday.

“The good thing is we were able to keep them under 100,” guard Nickeil Alexander-Walker said. “Especially in today’s (version of the NBA) game. It’s such an offensive game and (Minnesota has) great players who are able to score and get hot easily, as we saw with Anthony Edwards in the third (quarter). One thing I like is we kept it together. Through the runs, throughout the entire game, we stayed consistent with our principles.”

“I feel like our offense will eventually come along – it’s a new system and everybody is still adjusting to everybody,” rookie forward Herbert Jones said. “But as long as we keep up our defensive intensity, our offense will come. We’ll start getting more confidence in our offense and playing a lot better.”

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