Sierra Canyon freshman guard LeBron James Jr. finished with 15 points and hit the game-winning layup to lead his school past St. Vincent-St. Mary’s, the alma mater of his famous father, in front of 13,000 people in Columbus, Ohio on Saturday night. LeBron James Sr. (do we have to call him that now?) and his wife Savannah were in the stands beaming like proud parents the entire time.
Bronny James is 15 years old and is just beginning his high school journey, but if this game is any indication, he already has his father’s poise in big moments. With a stadium full of people focused on him and thousands more streaming the game on ESPN’s platform, Bronny delivered a fantastic performance and made clutch plays late to give his team the win.
Watch full highlights of Bronny James vs. St. Vincent-St. Mary’s here:
LeBron James first rose to prominence at St. Vincent-St. Mary’s in the early ‘00s while hyped as the game’s next big thing. His son is starting his high school career as a role player on a loaded superteam that plays a national schedule (Sierra Canyon plays in eight different states this year). His father’s rise came out of poverty in Akron, Ohio, while his son is the famous child of a wealthy celebrity in Los Angeles.
Bronny’s high school experience will be undeniably different from his father’s, but the spotlight will feel similar. In the biggest game of his high school career so far, Bronny lived up to the hype and helped create an unforgettable experience for his entire family. Everything about this night was perfect.
Bronny James put his talent on full display
There was so much pressure on the younger James coming into the night, and he delivered in full. With his team down one with under a minute left, James Jr. stole the inbounds pass and streaked up the basket for what would be the game-winning layup:
Bronny had been coming off the bench for Sierra Canyon (read more about the makeup of the team here), but he started and played a key role on Saturday. The 6’2 guard showed his father’s unselfishness on the court and made several athletic plays that contributed to the win.
Look at the grace and touch on this driving layup from Bronny.
Bronny with the sweet scoop layup finish pic.twitter.com/yrgul8oa87— ClutchPoints (@ClutchPointsApp) December 15, 2019
LeBron James Sr. will go down as one of the most polarizing athletes of his generation despite his greatness. The unfortunate reality of Bronny’s experience will be that plenty of people will be hoping to see him fail. Against a very good St. Vincent-St. Mary’s team that is perennially one of Ohio’s best programs, Bronny didn’t crack under pressure. Instead, he played a terrific all-around game that showed he’s a talented prospect in his own right.
LeBron James and his family were so excited
As anyone who has seen him as a spectator at his son’s games before knows, James is an animated fan on the sidelines. LeBron Sr. was fired up after this transition layup by Bronny in the first half.
El hijo de LeBron, Bronny, alentado por su padre, MVP del juego de High School de su equipo (Sierra Canyon). pic.twitter.com/BK5AAChtBv— SportsCenter (@SC_ESPN) December 15, 2019
Bronny awarded the MVP trophy for the event after the game and posed for pictures with his family and their friends. James Sr. reportedly had dinner with his old high school teammates before the game, and had about 75 friends in the stands to watch Bronny play.
This is what a proud father looks like:
What a moment for Bronny and LeBron— ESPN (@espn) December 15, 2019
Bronny won game MVP in Sierra Canyon's win over his dad's alma mater, St. Vincent-St. Mary. pic.twitter.com/Lt20PyZwEt
This was the first time James has been able to watch his son play in-person this year, and he made the most of it. Now it’s back to work for LeBron Sr.: the Lakers play the Hawks in Atlanta at 5 p.m. on Sunday.
It’s going to be so much fun to watch Bronny grow as a basketball player
Will Bronny eventually be an NBA-caliber prospect? Is it unfair to expect so much of him?
However Bronny’s high school career plays out after the next 3.5 years, it’s going to be incredible to watch the end of LeBron’s playing career coincide with the start of his son’s. For one night in Ohio, everything was perfect. We can’t wait to see where Bronny goes from here.