Through his first few weeks since returning from a knee injury, New Orleans Pelicans rookie forward Zion Williamson has quickly taken the league by storm. Williamson has become one of the most entertaining players to watch on the floor on a nightly basis. He’s become a rising star in the league with a bright future ahead. It has made Williamson‘s merchandise that much more valuable given the historic start that he’s been off to in his brief NBA career. All that has led to his memorabilia to already push north of $15,000 in bidding.
Zion Williamson’s impressive start to NBA career
Williamson‘s rookie campaign didn’t get off on the right foot as he missed the first couple of months of the season due to a torn meniscus in his knee that required surgery.
However, the 19-year-old returned to the court in January and has made an immediate significant impact on the floor for the Pelicans. Williamson has emerged as arguably their most consistent offensive factor as he’s averaging 24.2 points and 6.9 rebounds while shooting 58.8% from the floor.
That has seen him put himself in rare company in NBA history as he’s the first teenager to record three 30-point performances in their first 15 games played. He joined Hall of Famers Shaquille O’Neal and Grant Hill as the on the only players with seven 20-point outings in their first 10 games career games over the last 30 seasons. He joined O’Neal and Allen Iverson as the third rookie over that span to notch at least 200 points over that stretch of career games played.
Williamson is also the first rookie in 35 years since Hall of Famer Michael Jordan to notch eight 20-point outings in their first 10 career games. Meanwhile, his current streak of 11 straight games with 20 points is the longest for a teenager in NBA history. All of that helped him earn Western Conference Rookie of the Month for February.
Beyond that, Williamson clearly has an extremely bright future ahead in the NBA.
Zion Williamson’s memorabilia garnering huge bids
The quick rise to stardom in the NBA has made anything associated with Williamson go through the roof in the sports memorabilia collection market.
According to Eric Woodyard of ESPN, that has seen a game-worn jersey from this season from the Pelicans rookie sell for more than $15,000.
NBA Auctions launched a bid for one of his game-worn Pelicans City Edition uniforms on Feb. 27. As of Tuesday afternoon, it remains one of the most popular items on the site — cracking over $15,000 with the close date set for March 19.
More memorabilia products for Williamson have been sold since his NBA debut Jan. 22 than any other player across the Fanatics network (which includes NBAStore.com), according to the company. And for merchandise and memorabilia sales combined, he’s been a top-five-selling NBA player, with a 175 percent spike in sales month over month.
It shouldn’t come as much of a surprise given how well Williamson has played through his first 16 career games. He has put together an impressive start behind his record-breaking production on the court.
If he continues to stay on this promising path, the bidding amounts will only remain heading steadily north.
Zion Williamson’s bright future ahead
The Pelicans’ rookie big man has already proven to be worth all the hype around him behind his stellar play.
Williamson has emerged as a prominent offensive factor on the floor despite the offense not being built around his scoring prowess. His production has come in the flow of the game, which has proven to be even more remarkable in his rookie campaign.
There will be a necessary adjustment period as defenses get game tape on how to defend, but the fact that he’s remaining a massive factor in the paint is a promising sign moving forward. Williamson has the chance to become one of the league’s top talents in short order if he continues to produce at this pace,
The underlying concerns linger around his weight, but if he can stay on track with that aspect of his career, it should see many extremely productive and accolade-filled campaigns ahead.