Phil Kornblut

State’s next big NBA prospect Zion Williamson poised for busy stretch

The 2017 NBA Draft came and went Thursday with two college players from the state selected: South Carolina’s Sindarius Thornwell and Clemson’s Jaron Blossomgame.

Two summers from now, for the 2019 draft, Zion Williamson of Spartanburg Day might hear his named called out ... and possibly called out first.

But that’s down the road. Right now the 6-foot-6 phenom is focused on returning to his AAU schedule this weekend in Los Angeles fully healed from a deep knee bruise that forced him to shut things down for several weeks.

“It was during a warmup prior to the first week of the AAU season. We were in Arkansas and it was hot and the floor was slippery and he fell one time on it and I saw that knee hit that floor and the next morning he told me that knee was swollen,” said Williamson’s step-father, Lee Anderson. “We had the doctors look at it and they said it was a deep contusion so we just got him off of it. He went to Dallas and played in the very first game and he wasn’t 100 percent and I could tell, so we just shut him down.”

There is an Adidas event in LA this weekend for Williamson, and then the Adidas Gauntlet Final will be in Spartanburg July 12-15. He just received clearance from his doctor this week to go back at things full speed, and Anderson said they are working now to get him back into shape.

Except for evaluation days, college basketball recruiting currently is in a “quiet period” through July 5. It goes to a “dead period” starting July 6 and lasts the rest of the month except for evaluation days. Williamson has been able to take a break from all the recruiting activity that swallowed him up earlier in the year.

“There’s nothing going on with schools,” Anderson said. “Nothing new going on. Everything’s been kind of quiet since AAU started. He’s in the process of determining where he wants to visit. We haven’t come up with that list yet. We are still interested in all the schools. South Carolina and Clemson have always been in the mix. Whenever he makes that list it will be between five and six, I’ve heard him say.”

At this point, Williamson plans to take his official visits in the fall but wait until the spring to sign.