Zion Williamson missed Duke's game on Saturday night after suffering a right knee sprain on Wednesday.

By Jenna West
February 23, 2019

Duke head coach Mike Krzyzewski said freshman phenom Zion Williamson has not discussed staying on the bench after recovering from his knee sprain.

Krzyzewski addressed the chatter that has surrounded Williamson over the past few days, emphasizing that the forward will be back on the court.

"[Williamson] wants to play," he said, per Yahoo Sports' Pete Thamel. "He loves being at Duke."

Williamson was listed day-to-day after suffering a Grade 1 right knee sprain on Wednesday night during the Blue Devils' loss to North Carolina. He slipped just 30 seconds into the game, causing his sneaker to explode.

Numerous people, including several NBA players, suggested Williamson should sit out the remainder of the season to protect himself from further injuries ahead of the NBA draft. Williamson is projected to be the No. 1 pick.

However, Coach K said Williamson and his family have not brought up the possibility of him sitting out. 

"No," he said. "None. A lot of people like to talk."

Krzyzewski went on to add that Williamson has done a "great" job handling this season.

"He’s handled everything all year great. He’s such a great kid," he said. "We would never play a kid who’s not ready to play. We’d never play a youngster who didn’t want to play. So, it’s not about that."

Williamson has averaged 21.6 points, 8.8 rebounds and 2.2 assists in 26 games this season. He cheered on his teammates from the bench during Duke's 75–65 win over Syracuse on Saturday night.

While no timetable has been set for Williamson's return, Krzyzewski did not seem worried that the forward would miss a significant portion of the season.

"It’s an injury you can get over in a shorter period of time," Coach K said. "There’s just a protocol we have to go through to make sure he’s completely ready. We’re not going to rush anything. That’s why we said 'day-to-day' because it’s literally day-to-day."

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