Duke Star Zion Williamson Suffers Sprained Knee In Loss To North Carolina

Duke Star Zion Williamson Suffers Sprained Knee In Loss To North Carolina

Duke Star Zion Williamson Suffers Sprained Knee In Loss To North Carolina

No. 1 Duke, which plays host to No. 8 North Carolina on Wednesday night in the season's first meeting of those long-time rivals, owns a nine-game winning streak and continues to sit atop the ACC standings with an 11-1 conference mark ...

Williamson's left shoe fell apart as he planted hard near the free throw line. His foot slid on the floor and the shoe "exploded," according to some observers.

The talents of Duke freshman Zion Williamson have not gone unnoticed by his future National Basketball Association opponents, including Golden State Warriors center DeMarcus Cousins. He's a lock to join the pantheon of players that get their biggest paychecks from someone other than the team they play for.

The mishap sent Nike Inc (NYSE: NKE) shares down as much as 2 percent Thursday. Williamson was wearing PG 2.5s.

"The quality and performance of our products are of utmost importance", the company said. Nike also released a statement saying the company was "working to identify the issue".

Puma's basketball account weighed in on the fiasco, mocking Nike in a now-deleted tweet that reads: "Wouldn't have happened in the pumas".

As for the game itself, Duke looked lost without Williamson.

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Oklahoma City Thunder superstar small forward Paul George told local reporters on Thursday he talked with Nike to see what went wrong with Duke phenom Zion Williamson's shoe on Wednesday night.

The injury was a startling one, suffered just 33 seconds in and appeared to come as a result of Williamson's shoe giving out, after it busted open on the court at Cameron Indoor Stadium. We have to be back in the gym tomorrow, figuring out how to find that energy while he is gone.

That was good news for North Carolina, but the injury to Williamson, who packs uncommon leaping ability into a hulking frame, largely overshadowed the outcome.

"I hope he's going to be OK", fellow player RJ Barrett said of Williamson.

Turns out that he is probably the best prospect that we have seen come through college basketball since Anthony Davis was cutting down the nets for Kentucky in 2012.

Utah Jazz guard Donovan Mitchell, who played in college at Louisville, said on Twitter that "something has to change" in the wake of the injury.

"Again let's remember all the money that went into this game.... and these players get none of it.... and now Zion gets hurt", he tweeted. Opening at $83.50, it was the largest drop in Nike's stock in over a week.

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