Breaker of rims: Zion bends hoop in Rising Stars


CHICAGO — United Center rims proved to be no match for rookie Zion Williamson.

After catching a lob pass from USA teammate Trae Young during Friday night’s Rising Stars Challenge game, Williamson slammed down a two-handed jam that caused the rim to bend.

At halftime of the NBA All-Star Weekend event, United Center employees had to bring out a ladder and readjust the basket to its proper alignment. That’s the force of a 284-pound player who posted a 45-inch vertical leap in college.

It wasn’t the only gawkworthy Williamson dunk that brought the crowd to its feet Friday. The New Orleans Pelicans forward wowed fans and left the backboard shaking with a dunk after a between-the-legs pass from USA teammate Ja Morant.

With two minutes remaining in the third quarter, Williamson had scored 14 points on 7-of-8 shooting in 15 minutes of play. Five of Williamson’s seven field goals had been dunks.

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