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Where Zion Signed His Contract Spoke Volumes

Zion Williamson shared his historic moment with the Dryades YMCA kids.

What was missing from the narratives surrounding Zion signing his new contract was the location he chose. Williamson had his pick either at Pelicans HQ, Smoothie King, Caesars Superdome, a swanky hotel, or even his home, but none suited him more than the Dryades YMCA.  

"The 'Y' is a really big part of just my journey as a human being and, frankly, as a man. And so I was really grateful that Zion wanted us to participate in this and that we could share that moment here," Pelicans EVP David Griffin said. 

Zion's summer camp's youth were in for a treat, not only to his birthday celebration, but to history. There were no Pelicans executives at the table where Zion inked his deal. The forward had his mother and stepfather to his left and right and the Dryades YMCA kids overlooking his shoulders to the back.  

It was one of those life moments a kid will never forget. Look at the photos and notice how engaged the children were at the signing.  

Zion Signing His Contract

A superstar NBA player wanted them present at the signing of his huge contract extension.  His deal could help provide the kids more fun times and resources for families in the Dryades YMCA's surrounding community.   

"But it's also what he's doing here in the community, as you can see here in the YMCA, what he and his family has been, but they've started here, and I know they're gonna keep this thing going around the city, impacting lives impacting the youth of the city, which I know is incredibly important to them, but incredibly important to us as an organization as well," GM Trajan Langdon shared.

Personally, it was a grand gesture where I also connected with Zion. More than 40 years ago, I spent several summers at the same Dryades YMCA. Those camps were tremendous, built my character, and left me with awesome memories of playing sports like basketball, swimming, track, and even chess. Recently, Zion had a day at the movies with the Dryades YMCA kids. We too saw movies. One, in particular, was former NBA champion Jamaal Wilkes starring Cornbread, Earl, and Me. 

Zion shared his view of the moment, "It means more than I can see here and explain. I came up in a camp just like this. For many summers. That's how I fell in love with the game of basketball. So I want to thank the YMCA for allowing me to share this moment with them for them allow me to use the space me means the more than I can sit here and explain really the YMCA. And those summer camps helped shape me into the man I am today. So just thank you to the YMCA."

Kudos Zion! Deciding to be at the Dryades YMCA spoke volumes about Zion, his character, and how he's evolving into a member of the New Orleans community.  

Speaking for the NOLA kids, please keep the connection going. You'll never know the true impact of the impression you're making on each of them. Time is fleeting, but the memories will last forever.