Skip to main content

Bryson Bishop - the 5'6 kid that refused to back down from Zion - reacts to Williamson's praise


Bryson Bishop will forever be remembered as the 5-6 kid who refused to back down from Zion Williamson.

The video of their high school matchup went viral in '17, and people loved how an undersized Bishop covered the nation's top high school prospect. And as it turns out, so did Zion.

Recently, while on The Old Man & The Three podcast, the Pelicans superstar revisited that sequence, praising Bishop for his approach to their matchup. "I've got a lot of respect for him for doing that," Williamson said. "His teammates were so out of it that he was just trying to give them energy. And for him to be the one to come over there and do that, I've got nothing but respect for him for doing that."

How much did Zion's praise mean to Bryson? He talked about it during an exclusive with Basketball Network.

It meant a lot, especially since after the video, he never talked about it or anything, so I didn't know how he really felt. I didn't know if it got annoying to him, how much it came out. But him saying he had respect for me meant a lot to me.

Bryson Bishop, Basketball Network

Scroll to Continue

Recommended Articles

Bryson knew that at some point during the game, he would be the one defending Williamson. So when the coach called his name, the 5-6 8th grader felt ready for that challenge.

Actually, in practice, we had talked about we were gonna go box-and-one and they were gonna put me on him. So I was kinda ready for it, but we didn't go into that box-and-one until about the third quarter, so I knew it was gonna come, but I didn't know when, so I was ready for that challenge.

Bryson Bishop, Basketball Network

The video shows Bryson aggressively clapping in Zion's face. He discovered that the only reason he did it was to hype himself and his teammates up when everyone else had already given up on the game.

I'm a competitor, and I always try to hype my team up, hype myself up, no matter what the circumstances are. I go out there and play with a lot of energy; that's kind of how I play. So I wasn't doing that for anything else besides hyping myself up and hyping my team up because we needed that.

Bryson Bishop, Basketball Network

Unfortunately, Bryson's efforts bore no fruit as his team lost 78-54. However, he did become famous for his defensive efforts on Williamson, who finished the game with 36 points.

Today, Bishop is a senior point guard and captain at Spartanburg Christian Academy -- the team he has led to back-to-back state titles. Next year, Bryson is headed to Charleston Southern - a Division 1 school - where he'll continue to pursue his lifelong dream of becoming an NBA player. Hopefully, he gets there. Zion is waiting...

Oscar Robertson

“It hurt enough that I never dunked again” - Oscar Robertson on why he never slammed the ball in an NBA game

Instead of dunking, Robertson opted to bait a foul from defenders for and-1 opportunities.


“No Rodman, no Grant? Oh we smacking them!" - Kenny Smith believes the Houston Rockets would have won the 1994 & 1995 Finals even if Michael Jordan was still on the Chicago Bulls

We obviously won't ever know the answer to this question, but it feels like the Bulls would have had a very tough time beating the Rockets in these two seasons

October 16, 2022; NBA former player Matt Barnes attends the South Point 400 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway

Former NBA Champion Matt Barnes spits on fiancee's ex-husband after he threatened to shoot him

Matt Barnes and David Patterson Jr. got into a heated altercation at the 49ers vs. Cowboys game last weekend.

Former NBA player Dwyane Wade at Arena (left); Hall of Famer Isiah Thomas at Rogers Arena

"I couldn’t stand him. And I love him now” - Dwyane Wade claims Isiah Thomas is the greatest player from Chicago

It’s nice to know that despite Isiah Thomas’ history with the city of Chicago, he’s still very much adored by those who were born and raised in the city like Dwyane Wade.