Contract options exercised on four Pelicans including Zion Williamson

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Kyle Kuzma, Zion Williamson
(Photo: Stephen Lew)

NEW ORLEANS – The New Orleans Pelicans announced today that the team has exercised fourth-year options on guard Nickeil Alexander-Walker, center Jaxson Hayes, and forward Zion Williamson, and a third-year option on guard Kira Lewis Jr.

Alexander-Walker has appeared in 93 games (14 starts) in two seasons with the Pelicans, averaging 8.3 points, 2.5 rebounds, and 2.1 assists in 17.2 minutes per contest. In 2020-21, he raised his rookie averages in points (+5.3), rebounds (+1.3), and assists (+0.3).

Hayes has appeared in 124 contests (17 starts) in his first two professional seasons, averaging 7.4 points and 4.2 rebounds in 16.5 minutes per game while shooting .647 from the field.

Williamson has posted averages of 25.7 points, 7.0 rebounds, and 3.2 assists, while shooting .604 from the floor, .333 from three-point range and .683 from the free throw line in 85 career appearances (all starts) with New Orleans. The 2021 All-Star selection is coming off of a sophomore season in which he averaged 27.0 points, 7.2 rebounds, and 3.7 assists in 33.2 minutes per game while shooting .611 from the floor. Williamson became the first player in NBA history to average at least 27 points on .600 shooting for an entire season.

Selected 13th overall in the 2020 NBA Draft, Lewis Jr. appeared in 54 games off the bench in his rookie campaign, averaging 6.4 points, 2.3 assists and 1.3 rebounds in 16.7 minutes per contest while shooting.386 from the floor, .333 from three-point range and .843 from the line.

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