Zion Williamson responds to NCAA Tournament question: "If Duke ain't in, I'm not interested"

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David Thompson, The Fayetteville Observer
·2 min read
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Zion Williamson, a former Duke star and the NBA's No. 1 overall pick in 2019, was asked Sunday which college team he thought would win the upcoming NCAA men's basketball tournament.

His answer will make a lot of Duke fans smile.

"Trick question," Williamson said after leading the New Orleans Pelicans to a 135-115 win over the Los Angeles Clippers. "If Duke ain't in, I'm not interested."

ESPN announcer Mark Jones laughed and clapped his hands in response to Williamson's answer.

"Hey, I love your loyalty," Jones said.

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Williamson is averaging 25.5 points and 7.0 rebounds in his second season and was named to his first NBA All-Star team earlier this year. His lone NCAA Tournament appearance came in 2019, leading the Blue Devils to the Elite Eight before being eliminated by Michigan State.

The Blue Devils (13-11, 9-9 ACC) were left out of the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 1995 after a positive COVID-19 test eliminated them in the quarterfinal round of the ACC Tournament last week. W

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"This season was a challenge for every team across the country and as we have seen over and over," Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski said. "This global pandemic is very cruel and is not yet over. As many safeguards as we implemented, no one is immune to this terrible virus.”

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David Thompson is an award-winning reporter for the USA Today Network covering NC State and Duke athletics. He can be reached at dthompson1@gannett.com, at 828-231-1747, or on Twitter at @daveth89.

This article originally appeared on The Fayetteville Observer: Zion Williamson: No interest in NCAA basketball tourney without Duke