3 NBA Trade Suitors To Monitor For Pelicans’ Zion Williamson

Zion Williamson, New Orleans Pelicans, NBA Trade Rumors
Stephen Lew-USA TODAY Sports

Life as an NBA general manager isn’t necessarily easy. You need to make difficult decisions. Sometimes, that means choosing between two star players. 

It seems that the New Orleans Pelicans may be making such a choice this summer. It’s being reported that they’ll choose between Zion Williamson and Brandon Ingram this summer. This will not be an easy choice. 

Sure, Williamson is younger. He has a higher ceiling. At the same time, his injury concerns have made him entirely unreliable. If the Pelicans choose Ingram, here are three teams that we think should take a look at Williamson. 

Oklahoma City Thunder 

If any star player is available, the Oklahoma City Thunder will have the means to acquire them. This team has more assets than anybody. The Thunder will have more than enough to send the Pelicans if they like Williamson. 

Should they? That’s a different question. Williamson’s ability to put pressure on the rim is uncanny. He’s a walking paint touch. Sure, he’s a defensive liability – but with Chet Holmgren in the middle, that may be a lesser concern for the Thunder. 

NBA NEWS & TRADE RUMORS: Zion Williamson, New Orleans Pelicans, Oklahoma City Thunder Updates

On the other hand, they may not want to compromise their defensive identity. Moreover, the Thunder may be content with the rim pressure that Shai Gilgeous-Alexander provides. Is there a more natural suitor for Williamson? 

Utah Jazz 

The Utah Jazz are a perfect basketball fit for Williamson. His on-paper synergy with Lauri Markkanen is undeniable. Markkanen can space the floor while Williamson pressures the rim. 

Meanwhile, the Jazz have their own defensive anchor to offset Williamson’s limitations. Walker Kessler isn’t as versatile as Holmgren – he can’t defend in space as easily – but with him protecting the rim, Williamson’s shortcomings would be minimized. 

NBA NEWS & TRADE RUMORS: Zion Williamson, New Orleans Pelicans, Utah Jazz Updates

With that said, the Jazz have a lot of flexibility. They may prefer to hang onto their assets and see if they can draft a star. Is there a team that doesn’t have that luxury? 

Brooklyn Nets 

The Jazz control their draft after this summer. By contrast, the Brooklyn Nets do not. They owe their first-round picks, whether outright or via swap, to the Houston Rockets through to 2027. 

So, the Nets have no incentive to lose. Meanwhile, this roster is interesting. The Nets have a lot of capable defenders and role players, but they could use an offensive focal point. 

NBA NEWS & TRADE RUMORS: Zion Williamson, New Orleans Pelicans, Brooklyn Nets Updates

Why not Williamson? If the Nets can retain Nicolas Claxton in free agency, he’s another big man who can cover for Williamson. Otherwise, the Nets can surround Williamson with 3-and-D wings which will make it easier for him to get to the rim. If Williamson is on the block, this may be an easy decision for the Nets. 

Clippers, Paul George ‘Apart’ in Contract Talks, Future Uncertain

One of the teams that people will be keeping a close eye on during the 2024 NBA offseason is the Los Angeles Clippers. The next

Williamson Leads Pelicans to 107-100 Victory Over Bucks

Zion Williamson‘s assertive performance in the closing minutes, including crucial free throws, led the New Orleans Pelicans to a 107-100 win against the Milwaukee Bucks

LeBron James Heaps Major Praise On Oklahoma City Thunder

For the second consecutive week, LeBron James of the Los Angeles Lakers has extended praise to the Oklahoma City Thunder. In a preview of the