NBA players urge Zion Williamson to shut it down after bizarre injury during UNC game

NBA players urge Zion Williamson to shut it down after bizarre injury during UNC game
Duke's Zion Williamson (1) falls to the floor with an injury while chasing the ball with North Carolina's Luke Maye (32) during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game in Durham, N.C., Wednesday, Feb. 20, 2019. (AP Photo/Gerry Broome)

(Langston Wertz Jr./Charlotte Observer) - Several NBA players are offering unsolicited advice to Duke star Zion Williamson after Williamson suffered what Blue Devils coach Mike Krzyzewski called a mild knee sprain Wednesday night in a game against North Carolina.

Williamson appeared to be trying to set up a spin move against UNC’s Luke Maye when his left foot busted through his shoe. Williamson lost his footing, fell to the ground and grabbed the back of his leg. He played 33 seconds and didn’t return. North Carolina ran away for an easy 88-72 win.

Afterwards, several NBA stars took to social media to advise Williamson to not come back to college basketball. In fact, Scottie Pippen, the former six-time NBA champion, offered similar advice several weeks ago.

Pippen has called Williamson the best NBA prospect since Michael Jordan.

“I think he’s locked up the biggest shoe deal,” Pippen said on ESPN’s “The Jump.” “I think he’s definitely going to be the No. 1 pick. I think he’s done enough for college basketball that it’s more about him personally now, and i think for him as a young player, I would shut it down. I would stop playing because i feel that he could risk a major injury that could really hurt his career.”

National sports business reporter Darren Rovell reported, via sources, that Duke had purchased an $8 million “loss in value” insurance policy (cost around $50,000) for Williamson. But Rovell said Williamson would have to slip below the No. 16 pick in this year’s draft to collect.

In a recent interview with Andy Katz of, Williamson said, “I always knew I would go to college. Even if they would’ve had the NBA rule, I still would’ve came to college. You’re never going to get this experience again. Once you go to the league, it’s grown men, kids, families. It’s not just teenagers having fun. It’s business then.”

But as soon as Williamson went down Wednesday night, NBA hit social media to urge Williamson to start thinking about business now.