Zion Williamson traded Paul George for Kyrie Irving in his return from injury on Thursday, and he considers it a significant upgrade.
In Williamson’s return from a sprained right knee in the ACC tournament quarterfinals on Thursday night, Williamson reflected on the exploding Nike that led to a 22-day absence, which accounted for his missing nearly six full games away from the Duke lineup.
Williamson wore a modified version of Kyrie Irving’s 4 model Nikes, opting for a higher-cut shoe after his Paul George-model Nikes blew out on Feb. 20 against North Carolina.
After Williamson shot 13-for-13 from the field, dunked five times and finished with 29 points in his return, it wasn’t surprising he gave the sneakers rave reviews.
“The shoes were incredible in this game,” he said after Duke’s comfortable 84-72 victory over Syracuse.
Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski detailed the lengths Nike went to trying to make up for the sneaker that Zion’s foot ripped through, which led to the sport’s most dominant viral video this season. And a mountain of bad press for Nike.