When Zion Williamson was shot out of this game in the opening minute with a knee injury, the very first assembly of Duke and North Carolina this year got off to a rough start. His left foot broke out of his shoe as Williamson drove the ball into the teeth of the Tar Heel shield and he went down clutching his right knee. Williamson didn’t return. Following is a peek at the play, which happened just 33 seconds into the match.
Zion’s shoe: destroyed 😳 pic.twitter.com/LqQ2te0Jay
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) February 21, 2019
“He broke his shoe along with his foot,” said ESPN broadcaster Dan Shulman. Williamson was taken to the locker room to be evaluated under his own energy. “We are very concerned about Zion. It is a mild knee sprain. We’ll know about the duration of time. It is stable,” Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski told reporters after the game. “Obviously it’s an effect. You Drop a National Player of the Year candidate on the play.”
Early in the game, any expectation which Williamson might return was squashed. Williamson, the likely No. 1 pick in the NBA Draft, on this season is averaging 21.6 points and 8.8 rebounds, shooting 68 percent from the field. At the start of the second half of, Maria Taylor on ESPN stated on Williamson, “He’s at the trunk still in the training room with his family, watching on TV. I am told that he didn’t enter the locker room [at halftime] because the rest of the team went in to hear from Coach K.”
North Carolina prevailed in the game, winning 88-72 at Duke.