New Orleans Pelicans star Zion Williamson is embracing home-court advantage.

After scoring a career-high 43 points to lead New Orleans to a 119-118 victory over the Minnesota Timberwolves on Wednesday, the Pelicans’ leading scorer said he’s focused on giving home fans something to cheer for.

“This the crib. It’s the fort. You’ve got to protect your fort,” Williamson said.

The 22-year-old added: “The city deserves this. The city deserves to have a basketball team. The Saints, they’ve been holding it down for so many years, you’ve got to give them that respect. But the city deserves to have the Pelicans be great, too.”

The Pelicans haven’t won a playoff series since the 2017-18 season – before Williamson entered the league. Their NFL counterparts, the New Orleans Saints, have won four division titles in the past five campaigns, making one conference championship appearance in that span.

The Pelicans are 15-4 at home this season, the sixth-best mark in the league. Williamson is averaging 26.6 points on 64.6% shooting from the field at home compared to 25.1 points on 57.1% shooting away from Smoothie King Center.

Despite speculation that he may not be long for New Orleans, Williamson signed a five-year, $193-million contract extension with the Pelicans in July.

New Orleans is 22-12 and currently tied with the Denver Nuggets atop the Western Conference.

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