Why Did the Pelicans Roast Stephen A. Smith With ‘Highlights’ Following His Criticisms of Zion Williamson?

The New Orleans Pelicans fired back at Stephen A. Smith's criticism of Zion Williamson with a hilarious 'highlight' reel. Find out why they decided to clap back! Read more.

Updated on Feb 24, 2024  |  09:19 AM IST |  64K
Image Courtesy: Twitter
Image Courtesy: Twitter

On a recent "Get Up" episode hosted by Mike Greenberg, discussions revolved around the Pelicans and their player, Zion Williamson. 

Stephen A Smith candidly criticized Williamson's eating habits and physical shape, reminding viewers that Williamson admitted earlier this year to struggling with maintaining a healthy diet due to his wealth and youth. 

This echoed a December report stating that Williamson appeared sluggish during the In-Season Tournament despite the organization's insistence on a healthier diet.

Continuing the discussions on this Friday edition of “Get Up,” Smith again targeted Williamson's weight, an issue he has addressed multiple times since Williamson's NBA debut in 2019. 

Despite Williamson's noteworthy performance scoring 27 points and nine assists in the previous day's victory over the Rockets, Smith maintained that the star player is still far from achieving optimal physical condition.

Smith emphasized that the issue with Williamson is not about his skills on the court. Instead, Smith pointed at Williamson's dietary choices, questioning his dedication to physical fitness and speculating about frequenting fast-food chains and restaurants. 

“Zion Williamson, it’s not about his game,” Smith said of the two-time NBA All-Star and 2019 No. 1 overall pick. “It’s about how many burgers he’s eating. Whether or not he is going to be in shape or keep eating McDonald’s and have chefs clamoring for him to come to their restaurants.

He stressed that Williamson needs to show a commitment to his fitness, thus refuting any chef's affinity for the player.

This led to a substantial backlash from the Pelicans' social media practitioners and a notable broadcaster.

They responded by releasing a graphic of Smith's college basketball statistics, highlighting his average score of merely 1.5 points per game in a single season.

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Stephen A. Smith and the New Orleans Pelicans Engage in Social Media Exchange

In response, they uploaded a compilation of Smith's so-called "athletic prowess".

Smith then retorted immediately, attributing a knee injury to the derailment of his career.

He responded to X saying, "A crushing knee injury prevented me from playing, therefore making scoring impossible.

That's my reality. Now, what's your excuse for never securing a victory? Can't wait to witness your performance in April, but let's not even speak of May and June! Wish you the best of luck!"

To counter further, the Pelicans shared a video that they labeled as "Stephen A. Smith highlights", which was merely a collection of Smith's worst moments on the field.

This included dismal basketball shots and a particularly disastrous first pitch at Yankee Stadium. This montage essentially served to mock the commentator.

These clips were set to the infamous audio track of Smith labeling Kwame Brown as "an outright failure".

Smith came back with two immediate replies, stating "I could concentrate on specifics, but I won't!" He reassured, "I'm a fan of several players along with the coach and of course, the city. You go ahead and play the game while I watch. I'm not leaving, good luck!"

Heading into Friday night's showdown with the Heat, Williamson has delivered an average of 22.5 points, 5.4 rebounds, and 4.9 assists per game this season, while achieving a successful shot ratio of 58.5 percent in the games played.

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About The Author

Rakesh Mehra is a passionate sports content writer at Pinkvilla, dedicated to bringing the thrill of the game to


Credits: Twitter ( now X)

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