NBA players have watched the hype surrounding former Duke star Zion Williamson, the first overall pick in the NBA draft, and no doubt have formed their own opinions on the young phenom.
Will he be as good as advertised? Is he overhyped?
Most players have kept their opinions on the Pelicans rookie to themselves, but not Portland Trail Blazers center Enes Kanter.
In an appearance Wednesday on FS1’s “The Herd with Colin Cowherd,” Kanter didn’t hold back on his thoughts about Williamson. In the process, he trash talked not just Williamson, but indirectly, one of his Pelicans teammates.
— Herd w/Colin Cowherd (@TheHerd) June 26, 2019
“I love Zion Williamson. He can pass, he’s big, he’s strong. I think he’s got a magnetism,” Cowherd said. “You think he’s overrated.”
“I kind of feel like he’s overhyped,” Kanter said. “I feel like he’s Julius Randle with hops.”
Randle is Williamson’s teammate, at least for now. On Sunday, Randle, who had a breakout year in New Orleans with 21.4 points and 8.7 rebounds per game, becomes an unrestricted free agent.
“By the way, you’re not the first person who’s said that,” Cowherd said.
“Some players are scared to say it, but you know me,” Kanter said. “I’m not scared to say anything.”
Cowherd then asked the Blazers center how he would he defend Williamson.
“I would just let him shoot,” Kanter said. Williamson’s outside shot has been labeled his biggest weakness by scouts and pundits.
But then Kanter qualified his evaluation of Williamson.
“If he develops his shot, he definitely could become a Hall of Famer,” Kanter said. “It’s all in his hands. He just needs to put the work in and just go out there and show the whole world.”
Randle got wind of Kanter’s indirect knock on him and had a savage comeback.
“Yo @EnesKanter last time you guarded me I had 45 relax bro lol,” he tweeted.
Yo @EnesKanter last time you guarded me I had 45 relax bro lol
— Julius Randle (@J30_RANDLE) June 26, 2019
But you knew Kanter would get the last word.
“I remember Brother. That was the game y’all got the ‘L,'” he fired back.
— Enes Kanter (@EnesKanter) June 26, 2019
Williamson didn’t comment, but you can bet he will respond on the court when the Pelicans face the Blazers.
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