Zion had foot surgery; Pels expect him for opener

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NEW ORLEANS — Zion Williamson suffered a broken right foot during the summer but should be available for the regular season, New Orleans Pelicans executive vice president of basketball operations David Griffin said Monday.

During his remarks at media day, Griffin said Williamson injured the foot early in the offseason prior to summer league and underwent surgery shortly thereafter to repair a fractured fifth metatarsal in his right foot.

“He had a fractured right foot that was repaired surgically,” Griffin said. “His timeline should get him back on the court in time of regular season. That would be our hope and our view. And we’re very optimistic about what that looks like.”

Griffin said he, general manager Trajan Langdon and vice president of player care and performance Aaron Nelson met with Williamson and his parents to establish a timeline to return to play.

Because of the injury, Griffin said Williamson was not with the team in Nashville during the past two weeks while players got together there for informal workouts. He said head strength and conditioning coach Stan Williams has been with him throughout the process.

Also, Griffin added that Williamson’s rehab has been “in lockstep” with the organization.

While Griffin didn’t think it was “terribly likely” that Williamson plays during the preseason, he expects Williamson to ramp up during that time period so he can be ready for the regular season.

Williamson was limited to 24 games during his rookie season in 2019-20 and didn’t make his debut until January because of a knee injury that kept him out 13 weeks. Last season, Williamson’s 2020-21 season ended early because of a thumb injury as well.

Despite that, Williamson has averaged 25.7 points on 60.4% shooting in his first two seasons.

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