The Pelicans lost Brandon Ingram and Zion Williamson to injuries Sunday in a 122-121 overtime loss to the Jazz.
Williamson took a hard fall with 8:07 left in the fourth quarter when his dunk attempt was blocked by Jazz guard Jordan Clarkson. Williamson, who had just blocked Clarkson’s shot on the other end, thought he had a breakaway slam and cocked back the ball with his left hand. Clarkson was able to get his hand on the ball, and Williamson took a fall, landing on his backside.
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Williamson initially said he was good to stay in the game and did so for the next possession but was clearly hampered. Just six seconds later, the Pelicans checked him out for good.
Trainers wanted Williamson to head to the back to be examined, but he waved them off and stayed on the bench for the rest of the game. It wasn’t until after the game that the Pelicans said Williamson was unable to return to play because of the injury, which the team is calling a posterior hip contusion.
CJ McCollum said his initial reaction to seeing Williamson fall was that it wasn’t good, but he was hopeful the forward wouldn’t miss much time.
“Unfortunate play,” McCollum said. “[Clarkson] made a play on the ball and he obviously fell and hit his back. Hopefully he’s back sooner than later.”
Williamson had 25 points and six rebounds on 10-of-16 shooting in 30 minutes when he headed to the bench.
With Williamson — and Ingram — out, the Pelicans were able to come back and force overtime. The Jazz led by as many as 17 in the fourth quarter and were up 102-88 when Williamson left. New Orleans was able to take a lead late in the fourth quarter, but Utah sent the game to overtime on a game-tying 3-pointer by Clarkson with 33 seconds left.
Neither team was able to connect on its final possession, and the game went to overtime, where Kelly Olynyk hit the winner for Utah with 3.1 seconds to go.
In the first half, the Pelicans ruled Ingram out with a head injury and said he was being evaluated for concussion-like symptoms. There was no update on Ingram following the game.
Ingram collided with teammate Naji Marshall as the two went up to attempt to steal a pass late in the first quarter. Marshall’s hand made contact with Ingram, and on the ensuing possession, the Pelicans called a timeout so Ingram could check himself out of the game.
After being evaluated by the team trainer, Ingram appeared to be fine and even told some teammates on the bench that he was fine. Ingram checked back in at the 6:33 mark of the second quarter, but not even a minute later, he called to the bench to check out. Instead of walking to the bench, Ingram walked directly to the locker room followed by team personnel.
In the Pelicans’ first two games of the season, Ingram was averaging 28.0 points, 8 rebounds and 6 assists per game while shooting 54.5% from the floor and 60% from deep. In 11 minutes against Utah, Ingram had 10 points and was 4-of-5 from the field.
The Pelicans are back in action at home Tuesday night against the Dallas Mavericks before heading west for a three-game road trip against the Phoenix Suns, LA Clippers and Los Angeles Lakers.
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