Duke freshman sensation Zion Williamson suffered a knee injury 36 seconds into tonight’s loss to North Carolina. Williamson’s left Nike sneaker blew out, and he hurt his right knee in the process.
Williamson was declared out shortly thereafter. He never even returned to the bench.
After the game, Mike Krzyzewski provided an update on Williamson. While it wasn’t definitive, it did give hope that maybe the star forward avoided a major injury.
Krzyzewski called the injury “a minor knee sprain” and added that it is stable.
“We’ll know about length of time tomorrow,” he said.
Coach K: “We’re very concerned about Zion. It’s a mild knee sprain. We will know about length of time tomorrow. It’s stable. Obviously it has an impact. You lose the NPOY on the 1st play.” pic.twitter.com/SCq6DBjnkJ
— Duke Basketball (@DukeMBB) February 21, 2019
ESPN sideline reporter Maria Taylor reported that Williamson tried to test his leg out in the tunnel after the injury, but ultimately returned to the training room with his immediate family, where he watched the rest of the game.
Without Williamson, Duke struggled immensely. The Blue Devils could only rely on R.J. Barrett and Cam Reddish to score, and UNC was able to take advantage of Williamson’s absence on defense by dominating the paint.
Duke is back in action on Saturday at Syracuse. Assuming Williamson is out for that game, it will be on Barrett and Reddish to carry the load once again against a ‘Cuse 2-3 zone that got the best of Duke at Cameron Indoor Stadium earlier this season.