The New Orleans Pelicans' Zion Williamson reacts after dunking against the New York Knicks on Saturday (AEST). Picture: Steve Marcus/AP
The New Orleans Pelicans' Zion Williamson reacts after dunking against the New York Knicks on Saturday (AEST). Picture: Steve Marcus/AP

Zion Williamson's NBA debut stopped by 6.9 magnitude quake

ZION Williamson's NBA introduction was stopped on Saturday (AEST) as a 6.9 magnitude earthquake struck California.

Midway through the fourth quarter of the New Orleans Pelicans and New York Knicks' Summer League clash, tremors were felt all the way inside Las Vegas's Thomas and Mack Center, with the overhead scoreboard and speakers left swaying above players and fans.

As some fans evacuated the building, players were sent down the tunnel, with all games within the arena eventually cancelled for the night.

"I was terrified," Doris Burke said on the ESPN broadcast as the commentary team tried to explain just what had just happened.

Mark Jones added: "I lost all concentration on what was happening on the floor. I couldn't tell you now what was going on on the court. I looked down at my Jordans here and I saw the floor moving - it was the strangest thing."

The Pelicans were leading 80-74.

Before that, in front of a sell-out crowd, and more than 1000 media representatives, Williamson, the 2019 No.1 pick put up 11 points and three rebounds - including a bunch of angry slams - in his nine minutes, before a left knee injury caused the 19-year-old to sit out the second half.

The Pelicans PR staff later said, the injury came after knee-to-knee contact, and wasn't expected to linger - the organisation understandably taking a cautious approach.

With some big names in attendance - LeBron James, Anthony Davis, Lonzo Ball and Trae Young, just to name a few - Williamson and former Duke teammate RJ Barrett made their Summer League debuts.

Barrett had a harder time of things - the No. 3 pick going four for 18 from the field for 10 points.