Zion Williamson, standout NBA forward whose high school dominance launched him into viral stardom, remembers one moment from a game that went especially viral — and wasn’t a high-flying dunk.
It was his reaction to Bryson Bishop, a 5-foot-6 eighth grader for rival Oakbrook Prep (S.C.) sizing him up to defend him despite the massive mismatch in size during the fourth quarter of a lopsided game in 2017, Williamson’s junior year at Spartanburg Day (S.C.).
On Friday, the two reunited for a photo before the New Orleans Pelicans’ preseason game against Atlanta and recreated Williamson’s reaction from the 2017 mismatch.
The two embraced and took a photo together, and Bishop responded to the recreated clip on social media.
“Coolest moment in my life for sure! I appreciate the opportunity to do this,” he said, tagging Williamson and the Pelicans.
It’s a moment the 22-year old hasn’t forgotten. Williamson was asked about the video in an interview with JJ Reddick on his Old Man & the Three podcast in March 2021. He recalled the moment and recalled Bishop by name.
“I’ll never forget that,” Williamson said. “That was our rival … we’re up 30 at this point. We come out of a timeout, and he starts walking over to me, and I’m like ‘no way.’ “
Williamson looked to the baseline out of frame toward his high school athletic director and track coach, pointed to Bishop in a defensive stance with his arm around the then-five star prospect, and flashed a confused look.
“I was like ‘are they serious?’ Then he fouled me.” Williamson continued. “Thing is, I’ve got a lot of respect for him for doing that because his teammates were so out of it, he was just trying to give them energy … but when it was happening in the moment, I was like ‘no way, don’t disrespect me like that.’ “
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