Rejoice, Duke fans, Zion Williamson is nearing a return.
The Blue Devils forward was injured in the opening minutes of the highly anticipated matchup between the North Carolina Tar heels when his shoe exploded Feb. 20. Williamson did not return to the game and has been out of action since, including a rematch with the Tar Heels.
Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski said the 19-year-old wanted to play when talk of shutting him down for the rest of the season began to swirl. But it sounds optimistic will make his return to the court Thursday to open the ACC tournament.
“I think we’ll get Zion back for Thursday,” Krzyzewski said, via ESPN. “He worked out this morning — again, no contact — but Monday, there will be. Hopefully, we’ll get a couple good days of practice where he can be 5-on-5, and then see how that goes. But the way he looks right now, I think it’s just a matter of getting in shape, getting in game shape, and going forward.”
That’s certainly good news for Duke, which dropped three out of six games without Williamson, including both contests against UNC, and is in jeopardy of losing a No. 1 seed for the NCAA Tournament. Williamson’s presence no doubt will add an offensive boost for the Blue Devils. The forward was averaging 21.6 points per game to go along with 8.8 rebounds. He was shooting 68 percent from the field before his injury.
Thumbnail photo via Rob Kinnan/USA TODAY Sports Images