Zion frustrated with minutes restriction: 'I want to stay in'
Kevin C. Cox / Getty Images Sport / Getty

New Orleans Pelicans star Zion Williamson isn't enjoying his minutes restrictions over the club's past two contests.

"It's very tough, to be honest, because as soon as I start to break that sweat, I look over and that horn is for me and I have to come out the game," Williamson said Sunday, according to ESPN's Andrew Lopez.

Williamson added, "I'm a competitor, I want to stay on the court. When I'm coming out of the game, my competitive side of me that I want to stay in. I guess that does affect the fun a little bit, but not too much."

Williamson has played 15 and 14 minutes, respectively, in his first two games in Orlando. New Orleans has mostly used the No. 1 pick in "burst restrictions" at the beginning of quarters.

The team's decision stems from Williamson's extended absence from the bubble. The rookie left the campus environment July 16 to attend an "emergency family medical matter" and missed 13 days of basketball activity.

The Pelicans dropped both of their contests during the restart, including a heartbreaking two-point loss to the Utah Jazz on Thursday. But as New Orleans' playoff hopes dwindle, head coach Alvin Gentry continues to advise Williamson of the big picture.

"We talked to him about that," Gentry said. "You just have to be smart in those situations. Everyone wants to play and play right now. We try to spend time as coaches and medical people trying to let him understand that this is going to be for the best short term and long term."

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Zion frustrated with minutes restriction: 'I want to stay in'
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