LAS VEGAS — RJ Barrett has faced Zion Williamson countless times in practice as teammates at Duke.

Now they get the Las Vegas stage as opponents.

Barrett, the Knicks’ new 6-foot-7 lefty lottery pick, doesn’t have any grand advice for his Knicks teammates as the summer league team debuts Friday (9:30 p.m. ET) at UNLV against Zion and the Pelicans.

“He’s a great talent,’’ Barrett told The Post after the Knicks’ final summer league practice Thursday. “He’s going to do his thing. I’m going to do my thing. It’s about which team wins.’’

Barrett and Williamson were best buddies at Duke, which made the Elite 8 last spring before being upset by Michigan State. Barrett and Williamson each averaged 22.6 points, though Williamson was the one who became a national sensation along the way because of his athletic dunks. Before the season, Barrett, who is not the athlete that Zion is, was projected as the No. 1 pick.

“He’s a freak,’’ Barrett said. “There’s nothing you can do about it. You just got to contain him.”

Williamson plays power forward while Barrett is expected to start at shooting guard, though there’s no guarantees with Allonzo Trier on the Knicks’ summer league roster. Knicks assistant coach Jud Buechler is the summer league coach and was not made available to the media.

Barrett said this week he “laughed’’ when he saw the schedule, knowing the Knicks-Pelicans summer opener was not random.

“It’s going to be fun playing against my friend,’’ Barrett said. “I’ll probably going to get switched on him, but we’ll see what the game gives.

“I have been wanting to play for a long time. I haven’t played for so long. But we haven’t talked about the game at all. We’re just going to go out and play.’’

As The Post reported, New Orleans attempted to trade up from the fourth spot in the draft to No. 2 to snatch Barrett and join him with Williamson. But the price asked for by Memphis, which held the second pick, was too high.

Barrett prefers one day they are together as Knicks.

“Hopefully, one day we’ll be on the same team,” Barrett said after the draft to ESPN Radio’s Michael Kay. “That’s my brother, I’ll try and recruit him over.”

Since the Blue Devils’ season ended in disappointing fashion, Barrett, who shot 30.2% from beyond the 3-point arc, has said he has elevated parts of his game after relentless workouts in Southern California.

“I’m just ready to go out on the court, compete, play basketball and have fun,’’ said Barrett, who desperately wanted the Knicks to draft him because of his family’s ties to New York.

Knicks president Steve Mills can’t wait for Barrett’s debut.

“I think he’s ready for this,’’ Mills said of the NYC spotlight.

The Knicks’ three rookies from last season — center Mitchell Robinson, Kevin Knox and Trier — are on the roster. So is power forward Henry Ellenson, the former Pistons first-round pick whom the Knicks signed in February and is a free agent.

Ellenson, Robinson and undrafted Oregon rookie Kenny Wooten Jr., a shot-blocker, could see lots of Zion.

“He’s an athletic guy,’’ said Knicks guard Kadeem Allen, who is on a two-way contract for next season. “He’s got the ability to be one of the real good players in the NBA. If he plays hard and stays humble, he can have a bright future.”

Source: Read Full Article