Coach K: Zion Williamson Doubtful to Play Saturday vs. UNC

Duke vs. North Carolina guide Start time stream

They'll remain without Zion Williamson on Saturday night when the Dean Dome plays host to the thrilling ACC tilt between the No. 3 Tar Heels and No. 4 Blue Devils.

Williamson, who is considered the likely No. 1 pick in the 2019 National Basketball Association draft, has not played since spraining his right knee in the first minute of Duke's last matchup with the Tar Heels on February 20.

The Blue Devils can clinch a share of their 20th ACC regular-season title with a win over the Tar Heels and a Virginia loss.

"I don't think he'll be ready for Saturday", Duke head coach Mike Krzyzewski told C.L.

Barrett still has one regular season content, ACC Tournament play, and the NCAA Tournament to add to his freshman scoring record.

Projected by many to be a top pick in the 2019 NBA Draft, Williamson has been averaging 21.6 points and 8.8 rebounds while shooting 68.3 percent from the field in 2018-19.

The school made the announcement about four hours before the fourth-ranked Blue Devils play host to Wake Forest in their home finale Tuesday night. The Blue Devils got back into the game when the Demon Deacons missed 11 of their next 12 shots, many of them good looks.

I'm sure the Duke Blue Devils would love to get revenge in this contest, but it's a tough ask when Zion Williamson isn't on the court.

"The way it's going, he's not going to be doubtful for the tournament", Krzyzewski said.

A matchup with Pittsburgh in the opening round of the ACC Women's Tournament was just what Duke needed. Thursday's workout "was pretty exciting really, to see him move and have confidence in his movements". But Duke has demonstrated since Williamson's injury that it is dependent on the fortunes of a single player more than any other team in the country.

Duke's Zion Williamson, second from right, injured his knee on Feb 20.

They aren't a team full of scorers, though, and Krzyzewski said he's enthusiastic about his star's impending return and its potential impact on the Duke offense. "You can't put together a well-oiled machine here in a couple practices to play in this conference at a level when you lose a kid like that".



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