On Sunday, LeBron James played Ziaire Williams, one of his son’s former high school teammates.
James called it “weird,” saying he remembers watching Williams play in high school.
Soon turning 37, James will likely face many more of his son’s teammates in the coming years.
LeBron James had a surreal moment during the Los Angeles Lakers win over the Memphis Grizzlies on Sunday.
During the first quarter, Grizzlies rookie forward Ziaire Williams checked into the game. A 20-year-old rookie out of Stanford, Williams played high school at Sierra Canyon alongside James’ son Bronny James.
“I looked at Ziaire a couple times and was just shaking my head inside,” James told reporters. “Just remembering a year and a half ago, two years, not even a full two years, he was hitting a game-winner to send them to the state championship alongside my son, and going to the game and supporting Sierra Canyon, and one year at Stanford and now he’s here.
“So it’s a weird dynamic for myself to see something like that, but happy for the kid, obviously. But I had a moment for sure.”
Williams finished the game with 3 points on 1-of-6 shooting with 3 rebounds in nearly 18 minutes. James, meanwhile, had 19 points, 6 rebounds, and 6 assists – a more modest outing by his standards.
Williams had been looking forward to the game. After he was drafted, he told reporters that the thought of playing “Uncle ‘Bron,” as Williams calls him, had hit him all at once.
“That is going to be a crazy night, for real,” Williams said. “That’s crazy. It really just hit me that I’m really going to play LeBron. That’s going to be a fun experience.”
Williams told reporters that he had become close with James and Dwyane Wade, whose son Zaire Wade also played at Sierra Canyon.
In 2017, Williams even posted a photo alongside James to Instagram.
Meanwhile, James will have to get used to the unusual dynamic of playing against his son’s teammates.
James could face Brandon Boston Jr., a second-round pick from Kentucky who played at Sierra Canyon, when the Lakers play the LA Clippers on December 3.
There could be more down the line. Zaire Wade was selected by the Salt Lake City Stars of the G League and could have an opportunity to play in the NBA down the line.
James could even play with or against his own son in a few years – which James has stated as a goal of his.
At 36, turning 37 in December, James hasn’t slowed down much. It might not be long until he plays several of his son’s teammates several times a year.
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