DeAjai Dawkins’ Day Two standouts 

6’2 2024 Zion Walker (CP3 2024) 

In my opinion, every selfless high school athlete should have a default aspiration for their high school career; winning a state championship. For 2024 Zion Walker, he was able to cross that goal off his list early-on, as The Burlington School completed their marvelous journey toward hardware during the 2020-2021 season. Obviously, the work is nowhere near finished for Walker, who has 3 remaining years to establish his own legacy in the state of North Carolina. Today, Zion showed capabilities as a lead guard, penetrating the lane at will and finding the open man in an effort to convert on easy opportunities. Along with facilitation, he showed comfort from the 3 point line. With Jamari Thomas graduating from TBS, we may see Zion with more opportunities to operate with the ball in his hands. If today was any indication of what’s to come, let’s prepare for Zion to help his team toward another run. 

6’7 2024 Maurio Hanson (CP3 2024) 

Similar to the aforementioned Zion Walker, Maurio belongs to a fairly short list of freshman whose names have constantly been mentioned as some of the best 2024 prospects in the state. The appeal surrounding Hanson goes far beyond his impressive size, standing at 6’7 with a frame that I believe will continue to develop muscle throughout his high school career. The primary appeal, in my opinion, is in the skillset that Maurio has possessed before his freshman year began at Julius L. Chambers (formerly known as Vance High School). His advancement on the low block is difficult to rival, as he seems to spend a good bit of his training polishing his low-post moves. In a convincing win against Team Wall, Maurio showed that he can score with his back to the basket in a multitude of ways. His comfort from the midrange is evident as he rarely hesitated to take an open one, and I feel that in time that will expand to a reliable three point game as well. Maurio was able to secure an All-Conference selection as a freshman, expect to see more as the years pass.

6’5 2022 Graham Worland (Team Charlotte 2022) 

Coming off of an All-Conference year for Hough High School, Graham Worland continues to prove himself worthy of the consistent praise he receives throughout the gyms he plays in. At 6’5, Graham possesses elite size at the guard spot and has shown an undeniable confidence from all three levels. While I haven’t seen many examples of him taking them, I have reason to believe that Worland’s 3 point-range extends far beyond the line. One example I did see, was in the beginning minutes of a slow paced contest in his first game of the weekend. A defender made the mistake of leaving him open about 4 feet beyond the line, and Worland took the shot with the confidence of one who practices shots from that range on a daily basis. His frame allows him to penetrate the lane through contact, and he has the vision to hit open players. Graham seems to play with a high IQ level, and with his overall combination of talents, I struggle to see how coaches can pass on him. 

6’6 2023 Wesley Tubbs III

While we’ve seen a few 2023 prospects who have witnessed an increase in statewide recognition, there are few in a position to expand in popularity the way Wesley Tubbs III is. Standing at 6’6, Tubbs spent the greater half of his young basketball career leading his teams as a point guard. Through his experience as a lead guard, Tubbs learned to take pride in vocal leadership, passing, and high energy on the defensive end. After witnessing a growth spurt that now places him as a 6’6 sophomore with guard skills, I believe there are a few brand new conversations that Tubbs’ name deserves to be in. At Northside Christian Academy, Wesley assumed a position of leadership alongside a very young roster that many believe can make a state championship push. I believe a solid summer with Team United 16U, further development in his scoring aggression, and observing him in more and more winning situations will be enough for us to see a significant boost in Tubbs’ recruitment.