ZG Finals Preview
This weekend marks the 8th Annual Zero Gravity Basketball Boys National Finals, a weekend that has become one of the pinnacle events in grassroots basketball’s spring season. Zero Gravity has 731 teams set to compete all over the Greater Boston area for the chance to hold the title of National Champion. The field will hold representation from over 20 States as well as teams coming down from Canada.
Not only is the field the biggest in the history of this event but it is deeper talent wise than ever before, especially in the older divisions. Sneaker sponsored programs Mass Rivals, BABC, eXpressions, NE6, Team New England, Indiana Elite, and Team Saints will all send their teams to compete and they will be fiercely challenged not only by each other but the rest of the Division I field as well. Some of the top independents from around New England will be primed for upset bids as Middlesex Magic, WrightWay Skills, DC Blue Devils, RI Elite, Boston Bobcats and Metro Boston have proved they have the firepower to knock off teams that come in with more hype. Closely behind are the likes of Rise Above, PTT, New Haven Heat, and TSWolverines of Illinois.
Top Players to Watch:
Terrence Clarke, eXpressions 17u EYBL: Just a 2021 prospect, Clarke averaged over 12ppg on the Nike EYBL circuit this spring. He has great length at either guard position and is among the most talented young players in the country.
Akok Akok, Mass Rivals Gold: Akok fits the mold of how teams want to play basketball in 2018. He is very long, can shoot the ball from distance, and guard multiple positions, making him an asset to any team all over the floor.
Brycen Goodine, BABC: Goodine is a rangy guard who is going to fit extremely well in 2-3 zone of the Syracuse Orange. Athletic and able to play anywhere on the perimeter makes him a tough cover for teams no matter the line up.
Jaiden Delaire, NE6: At 6’9, Delaire is a matchup nightmare for almost any opponent. He is athletic and can play all over the court on both sides of the ball. He holds a multitude of high major offers and has been very much on the rise this Spring for New England’s only UAA sponsored program.
Charles Coleman, WrightWay Skills: Fresh off an appearance at the Pangos All-American Camp where he made the Top 20 Cream of the Crop game, Coleman looks to continue his success on the National stage. While he mans the 5 spot for WrightWay he is comfortable stepping outside and knocking shots down from the perimeter.
Bensley Joseph, Team New England: Recently reclassifying to Cushing Academy, Joseph looked very strong at the NERR Super 16 before going down with an injury. He has great command of the floor and plays at a good pace for such a young prospect.
Tommy O’Neil, Middlesex Magic: O’Neil has been a force to be reckoned with this spring. Moves very well for someone at 6’8 with a good frame. He can take defenders off the dribble or set up shop in the post. Plays hard on every possession and rebounds the ball well.
Gob Gabriel, DC Blue Devils (NH): Gob has had a great spring and continues to show a lot of potential as programs see his ability to fit into the modern game. He brings a high motor with him every day and can stretch the floor at 6’8. Gabriel has proved to be one of the most improved players in the country this spring, rising late just like his brother Wenyen did a few years ago.
Shyheim Odom, Boston Bobcats: Shy is just in 8th grade but has played and found success at both at the 10th grade and Varsity levels this spring, including a buzzer beater over eXpressions 16u EYBL team early in the 2018 ZG season.
Casey Simmons, Mass Rivals: If you pay any attention to the Mass Rivals twitter account you already know how loaded Simmons is with potential. He’s looking to make a name for himself on the National stage this weekend. 6’5 and long he can play all over the floor and has a nice feel for the game as a 2021.
Matt Cross, BABC: Cross plays with an undeniable toughness and plays well on both sides of the basketball every possession. His frame is much improved this spring which has vastly helped his versatility, making him tough to take out of any ball game.
Dallion Johnson, Mass Rivals: The one word to describe Johnson’s game is smooth. He always seems in control at the point guard position. Just a sophomore at Phillip’s Andover, he can get into the lane at will and is especially impressive for his age when shooting off the dribble.
Alex Stoddard, WrightWay Skills: 6’6 deadeye shooters are hard to find but WrightWay Skills has one that could be even better at the next level. Stoddard can get hot in a hurry and has a developing ability to run an offense from the PG spot when needed.
John Gates, Rise Above Basketball: One of the unsung heroes for Rise Above Basketball at the NERR Super 16 showcase. Gates nailed 8 threes in a narrow loss to eventual Co-Champion NY Jayhawks. Rise Above is definitely a team to keep an eye on this weekend.
Tedrick Wilcox, RI Elite Prep: Wilcox brings athleticism and a smooth shooting stroke to this team and plays hard on every possession. He can play as a 2 or 3 and rebounds very well for his position.
Tyler Kolek, Middlesex Magic: Recently reclassifying to 2020, Kolek was part of Mike Crotty’s team that was Co-Champs at NERR Super 16. He’s a natural floor general, great leader, and is a big time shot maker. Tough as they come.
ZG National Finals is going to be jam packed with talent and we will be on-site to evaluate and update in real time! A great chance for guys to make a name for themselves on the National stage and in front of college coaches. Look out for the older games to be played at The University Sports Complex in Hanover and Dana Barros Basketball Club in Stoughton.