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Roy: Zeller Might Return...Against NC State

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Wow, I was way off. Good thing I did not have money on it.

Roy Williams announced during his radio program on Monday that "he would not be surprised" if Tyler Zeller plays versus NC State.  According to Roy, the prospect of players going pro early forced him to consider this whereas 15 years ago he would not have.  The decision to play is Zeller's alone and I am assuming he has already indicated the desire to get back on the court right away.

Based on the timing of his return I think we can deduce that Zeller conditioning is still very good and why wouldn't it be?  The injury to his off hand would not preclude Zeller from maintaining his general conditioning nor would it affect his shot.  At the very least Zeller should be pretty close to early season form.  It is also reasonable to assume Roy is satisfied Zeller is playing at a high enough level to rejoin the team and make a contribution.

Getting Zeller back obviously can help a great deal in the area of team depth.  It also provides the Heels with an extra body down low that establishes a better safety net where foul trouble is concerned.  And who knows, Zeller could end up being effective on the offensive end if Tyler Hansbrough or Deon Thompson struggle.  The only question is whether this creates a chemistry issue and don't mean that in the "player X is upset his minutes are down" way.  Adding a player back into the lineup can throw everyone off.  It is important to remember Zeller played both his games without Hansbrough in the lineup.  What kind if impact does reintroducing Zeller now have? The answer lies with Roy who is a very good manager of personnel which is to say it all should work out.