JJ Reddick criticizes former teammate Zion Williamson after absence

After an apparent silence between them since arriving in New Orleans, Zion Williamson reached out to his new teammate CJ McCollum.

McCollum was traded to the Pelicans earlier this month, and played just five games for the team before the All-Star break. Saturday night that he has yet to speak with Williamson – who is still injured and has not yet played for the team this season.

McCollum: “I haven’t had direct conversations with him.” “I have spoken with some of the people close to him and I look forward to sitting down with him soon [rather] from later. I know as much as you know now, but I will get to the bottom of it.”

Although the details of their conversation are unknown, Williamson reached out to McCollum after those comments and the two spoke up, according to ESPN’s Mallika Andrews.

Williamson is still recovering after sustaining a foot injury over the summer and needing surgery. He was supposed to be ready to kick off by the start of the season, but he faced multiple setbacks in his rehab that kept him sidelined. He reportedly showed up for pre-season training at some point and weighed in at over 300 pounds.

Williamson has left New Orleans to focus on his rehabilitation, and it is said that he may need surgery for his second foot – which will undoubtedly delay his return further.

JJ Reddick criticizes Zion in ‘First Take’

Although he is no longer part of the Pelicans and now works as an analyst for ESPN, JJ Redick put his former teammate on “First Take” on Tuesday.

Riddick, who played parts of two seasons alongside Williamson before retiring, said Williamson is not an investor — and hasn’t been throughout his NBA career.

“There is a responsibility on you as an athlete when you play a team sport to fully invest,” Riddick. You are fully invested in your body, fully invested in your business and fully invested in co-workers. This is your responsibility, and we have not seen that from Zion.”

Riddick also said he actually called up Williamson against the Pelicans during the junior season.

“This is the pattern of behavior with Zion that we see over and over again,” Riddick. “I was his teammate, I can describe him as a separate teammate. That is an accurate statement.”

If Williamson can get back on the field, Riddick knows how much of an impact he will have on New Orleans. The previous first overall pick averaged 27 points and 7.2 rebounds last season, after all.

However, his out-of-court cases cast a shadow over his game in Riddick’s eyes.

“Yeah, he was great when he was on the field, 100%. It’s amazing to watch.” Riddick. “No one can do what they do on the basketball court…but as a teammate, there’s a pattern of behavior, as an individual fully invested in New Orleans, there’s a pattern of behavior. That’s concerning.”

JJ Redick didn’t hold back from talking about his former teammate Zion Williamson on “First Take” on Tuesday. (Shawn Gardner/Getty Images)