Zion Williamson 'fully weight-bearing,' but no return date set

Gentry: Zion is dying to be back on the court (0:31)

Alvin Gentry acknowledges Zion Williamson is ready to play again but also emphasizes the organization will not rush his return. (0:31)

NEW ORLEANS -- New Orleans Pelicans forward Zion Williamson returned to full weight-bearing exercises, but team executive vice president of basketball operations David Griffin isn't ready to set a return date just yet.

Williamson was seen getting up shots at Pelicans' shootaround on Tuesday. He was shooting from just inside and then just outside the 3-point line while working with Pelicans assistant Michael Ruffin.

The rookie had surgery on the meniscus in his right knee on Oct. 21, and Monday represented the end of the initial six-to-eight-week timetable the Pelicans announced after his surgery.

During the Pelicans' game against the Nets on Tuesday, Griffin spoke on the team's television broadcast about tempering expectations for the No. 1 overall pick.

"We're really excited with where he's at," Griffin said. "He's made really good progress. I know we've reached the eight-week point, and everyone is ready to see him. I think we're a little ways away yet, but today was a really big first step."

The Pelicans are off to a 6-21 start without their rookie forward, who was expected to play a major role this season. In the four preseason games Williamson played, he averaged 23.3 points and 6.5 rebounds. The Pelicans went 4-0 in those contests.

Williamson doesn't have a set date to return to practices -- let alone return to make his NBA debut -- but he could do more with the team on its four-game road trip that starts Wednesday at Minnesota and ends on Christmas in Denver.

"It's an important time for him because he's fully weight-bearing," Griffin said. "If we're going to see a setback, it would be now. The teammates, the way they responded to him, the joy he has when he's on the floor is evident. And we've obviously needed that."