Zion Broke an Unwritten Rule Against the Suns, But Was He Justified?
The Pelicans sit safely atop the Western Conference after a beatdown of the Phoenix Suns last night in the Blender. But that isn't what has Pels fans buzzing this morning.
Well after the game was decided (the Pels were up by double digits with mere seconds remaining), star Zion Williamson got the ball off a long pass from Larry Nance and did this.
Watch that again.
I mean, wow.
Smoothie King Center exploded after that jam while announcer Antonio Daniels pleaded "no, no, no", begging Zion not to break the unwritten rules of basketball.
The Suns took exception to the blatant disrespect of that action. But Zion and the rest of the Pelicans didn't back down an inch.
Suns player Cam Payne claimed the dunk was unsportsmanlike and the wrong thing to do.
Zion was of course questioned about his decision on that slam after the game, and he was as honest as he could be.
If you're a Pelicans fan, that's the competitive spirit you've been looking to see from Zion right there. He remembers watching his guys lose in the playoffs to these Suns. He wasn't able to play then, but now that he's able, he won't let that happen again.
It certainly doesn't help that the Suns have been braggadocious about their talent and stature on multiple occasions and even Pelicans players don't really like them.
Obviously, opinions were mixed after the game, as they always are. Most Pels fans, and basketball fans in general, were excited to see the fiery play.
Some bonus shade thrown at Chris Paul in this one...
Naturally, some purists and fans online were mad about the "disrespectful act", some even suggesting that Zion didn't deserve to do it because of the playing time he's missed.
Truthfully, and respectfully, that's lame. At the end of the day, the NBA is about entertainment and Zion provided that. Even if you're a basketball purist, CJ said it best in his postgame interview.
The whole unwritten rules thing, regardless of sport, is nonsense. Don't want to get scored on? Then play defense.
By the way, the shot Larry Nance rebounded? It wasn't a desperation 3 or anything like that. It was a Chris Paul layup that he bricked trying to pad his stats.
So yeah, I don't think Zion needs to apologize for anything. Keep up the good work, let the babies cry.