By: DeAjai Dawkins

2022 5’11 Cedrek Mangum (Charlotte Guards)

Cedrek has proven his toughness to me time and time again this weekend, establishing himself as a reliable scoring guard at his height. Magnum was effective from beyond the arc, knocking down the three-ball consistently and forcing the defense to focus on him.

6’0 2023 Derek Bradley Jr. (Gamechangers/Westminster Catawba) 

Coming to the end of what some would consider a breakout summer for the scoring guard, Bradley put up an impressive display playing alongside very respected names in the 2023/2024 classes. Bradley is an assertive downhill threat, who has more than proven his competence from beyond the arc. His move to Westminster Catawba should serve him well, playing alongside guys that will most certainly be attracting coaches to the gym. 

6’1 2022 Kendall Smith (Charlotte Express/J.L Chambers)

One of my favorite two-way guards in the Charlotte area, Smith is an agile combo guard with true lead guard capabilities. He’s split time this summer leading travel programs as a lead guard and contributing heavily in the scoring column. He possesses 3-level prowess that I believe has yet to see its best days, and by his junior year of college, he could be a player that coaches trust to take some of the most shots as well as defend some of the opposing team’s best guards.

6’0 2023 Trey Green (Team EAT/Link Prep) 

In my opinion, Trey Green is one of the best shooters I’ve seen in his class, and he should very realistically be acknowledged as one of the most dangerous sharpshooters in the nation. Green possesses unwavering mechanics, and can undoubtedly contribute from the perimeter at the highest level. I oftentimes say he reminds me of a young Jalen Brunson, who Jay Wright was able to develop from a consistent scoring threat to one of college basketball’s most respected lead guards in the past decade. 

5’10 2023 JJ Moore (NLPB/Hunter Huss)

JJ has had my attention for a while now, due to his longtime acknowledgment as one of, if not, the best 2023 prospect(s) in Gastonia. The quick, scoring guard is comfortable on the offensive end. He possesses a rugged mentality that I believe coaches would truly appreciate. In a win against a very talented trio of guards, JJ was the game’s leading scorer with 29 points. I think regardless of his height, he’s proven he can compete with some of the best. 

6’7 2024 Maurio Hanson (Anthony Morrow Elite/J.L Chambers) 

Maurio has a smooth faceup game to go along with the advanced low-post footwork he possesses for a rising sophomore. I’ve been aware of him since before his days at Chambers when he was making waves playing with Team Hope. Entering his sophomore season off an All-Conference freshman campaign, Hanson looks to expand on his role en-route to a state championship. Schools at the highest level have already started to extend offers and show interest.