Zion Williamson has been cleared in his return to play development with none restrictions, the New Orleans Pelicans mentioned Thursday .
The announcement clears Williamson to undergo offseason exercises unrestricted this summer time as he prepares for the 2022-23 season. Williamson missed your complete 2021-22 season after he broke the fifth metatarsal in his proper foot throughout exercises final summer time.
There was hope Williamson might have performed this season however setbacks prevented that from taking place. There was an out of doors probability Williamson might have returned if the eighth-seeded Pelicans made a deep run within the playoffs, however they fell in six video games to the top-seeded Phoenix Suns within the first spherical.
The replace comes after the Pelicans mentioned current imaging confirmed “continued enchancment” in Williamson’s proper foot. Williamson simply accomplished his third NBA season however has performed solely 85 video games in these three years due to accidents. He performed 24 throughout his rookie season after his debut was delayed by a torn meniscus in his proper knee.
Williams is eligible to signal a five-year, $186 million max rookie extension with New Orleans this summer time. When requested in regards to the extension on April 29 when the Pelicans did exit interviews, Williamson mentioned, “After all. I would not be capable to signal it quick sufficient.”
Williamson mentioned the 2021-22 season was a “tough yr” due to the harm that included him taking time to rehab away from the workforce in Portland. However as soon as he returned in March, he mentioned he might inform the Pelicans had been constructing one thing.
“Being actual, it sucks watching from the sideline,” Williamson mentioned. “I simply wish to be on the market. Simply seeing the potential. We’ve got plenty of nice items. I am excited to get out on the court docket with these guys.”
Williamson progressed to enjoying 5-on-5 full-court video games with Pelicans staffers and end-of-the-bench gamers in April, however by no means might clear the ultimate hurdle to make it again on the court docket for video games.