NBA: Zion Williamson scores 25 in return as Pelicans down Nets

Zion Williamson #1 of the New Orleans Pelicans goes to the basket as Nic Claxton #33 and Ben Simmons #10 of the Brooklyn Nets defend during the first half at Barclays Center on October 19, 2022 in the Brooklyn borough of New York City.

Zion Williamson #1 of the New Orleans Pelicans goes to the basket as Nic Claxton #33 and Ben Simmons #10 of the Brooklyn Nets defend through the first half at Barclays Heart on October 19, 2022 within the Brooklyn borough of New York Metropolis.  Sarah Stier/Getty Pictures/AFP 

Zion Williamson collected 25 factors and 9 rebounds in his first sport in over 17 months and the visiting New Orleans Pelicans by no means trailed in a 130-108 victory over the Brooklyn Nets Wednesday evening in New York within the season opener for each groups.

Williamson appeared in his first sport since Could 4, 2021 and showcased an array of inside strikes. The previous No. 1 total decide returned from lacking all of final season with a foot harm and confirmed no lingering results of a minor ankle injury sustained last week.

Williamson made 11 of twenty-two photographs in half-hour and helped New Orleans complete 62 factors within the paint. Williamson was notably dominant within the third when he made 5 of 6 photographs because the Pelicans outscored the Nets 40-28 to drag away.

Brandon Ingram paced the Pelicans with 28 factors on 10-of-17 capturing as New Orleans shot 49 %. CJ McCollum added 21 whereas Jonas Valanciunas collected 15 and 13 rebounds to assist the Pelicans break a seven-game skid to the Nets.

Kevin Durant scored 32 factors however had little assist because the Nets began their 11th season in Brooklyn with a dud. Kyrie Irving was held to fifteen factors on 6-of-19 capturing because the Nets struggled just about your entire sport.

Patty Mills added 16 whereas Nic Claxton chipped in 13 and 10 boards. Royce O’Neale contributed 10 however Ben Simmons completed with simply 4 factors and fouled out in 23 minutes throughout his first sport since Sport 7 of the Jap Convention semifinals towards Atlanta with Philadelphia on June 20, 2021.

New Orleans scored the primary seven factors and raced out to an 11-2 lead on consecutive hoops by Williamson lower than 4 minutes in. Jose Alvarado’s layup upped the result in 20-4 with 5:44 remaining and the Pelicans held a 32-14 lead after Williamson transformed a layup within the ultimate minute.

The Pelicans opened a 42-24 lead on Ingram’s fadeaway with 7:22 remaining and Brooklyn outscored New Orleans 26-8 the remainder of the half to get inside 58-50 after O’Neale’s putback beat the buzzer.

Durant’s 14-footer with 8:43 remaining acquired the Nets inside 66-56. Somewhat over 4 minutes later, New Orleans seized an 87-62 lead on Ingram’s 3-pointer to cap a 21-6 blitz and held a 98-78 lead coming into the fourth quarter.

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