Zion Williamson closes out Pelicans win over Suns with 360 windmill dunk

No player in the NBA can throw it down quite like Zion Williamson, and the New Orleans Pelicans star used the end of a game on Friday to provide a demonstration.

In the final minutes of a 128-117 win over the Phoenix Suns, Williamson got the ball with an empty court in front of him and used the occasion to deliver a 360 windmill dunk that wouldn't have looked out of place as an NBA Slam Dunk Contest entry.

The crowd, predictably, loved it:

The dunk capped off a 35-point game for Williamson, who was 13-of-17 from the field with seven rebounds, four assists and a steal. Not a single one of his baskets came outside the paint.

Of course, not everyone loved Williamson's display of dunking prowess. You can even hear a member of the Pelicans' broadcast say "No, no, no" as Williamson prepares to take flight.

You could make an argument that yamming on a defeated team for no other reason than to show off is bad form, but let's be real. The people in the Smoothie King Center paid good money to see, among other things, Zion Williamson dunk a basketball. They got to see him dunk a basketball even better than usual. Maybe it hurt the Suns' feelings, an odd consideration given that they are professionals, but the NBA is an entertainment product at its core, and it's hard to imagine living in a world where Williamson's dunk isn't entertaining.

Yes, those two extra points won't help the Pelicans in the long run outside of their media team's highlight reels, but they were the exclamation point on a big win for the 17-8 Pelicans, who currently sit in first place in the Western Conference.

NEW ORLEANS, LOUISIANA - DECEMBER 09: Zion Williamson #1 of the New Orleans Pelicans dunks the ball during the fourth quarter of an NBA game against the Phoenix Suns at Smoothie King Center on December 09, 2022 in New Orleans, Louisiana. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images)
Zion Williamson moved the Suns into first place in style. (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images)