Although the premise seems a bit off, former Duke star RJ Barrett does have a point here: when it comes to athleticism, Zion Williamson tends to skew the scales because, as Barrett rightly says, he has a freakish body. No one has ever seen anyone quite like him in basketball (it’s a different story in football where we have seen guys his size who are highly athletic. They just don’t generally choose basketball).
So while it seems a bit off somehow, we buy his argument that people don’t realize he can do some of the same things that Williamson does. An exact match? No. He weighs 70-80 lbs. less and can’t inflict the kind of force on the rim that Williamson can.
Do we think he can do dunk competition type dunks? Of course.
Where he gets on shakier ground – and he’ll be reminded quickly that he’s a rookie – is when he starts talking about guarding All-Stars.
Veterans live for that kind of stuff. James Harden and Giannis Antetokounmpo probably already have copies of his comments.
Also worth noting here: Barrett says “I’m not going to lie to you, I haven’t really lost. Maybe nine or ten games in the past five years. And even when I was younger, I was always winning championships.”
He’s taking that legacy to the Knicks. He is a winner but something is going to have to give.
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