Class of 2025 No. 1 Recruit AJ Dybantsa is the Sport’s Subsequent Excessive Faculty Famous person

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Gatorade State Participant of the 12 months in Massachusetts as a freshman. Gold medalist with the USA U16 group in Mexico. Chief in factors per sport (25.8) through the EYBL Peach Jam, whereas taking part in up. Nike NIL deal. No. 1 participant within the Class of 2025. AJ Dybantsa. 

“Playmaker first, two-way participant,” Dybantsa says of his private scouting report. “Protection and offense, can perform a little little bit of every thing: rebound, rating, cross, end. Only a group participant general, and unselfish.” 

We’ve been following AJ since he was a lanky eighth-grader hailing from Brockton, MA, documenting his meteoric rise over the previous few years. And regardless of reclassifying in October, Dybantsa clearly stays the most effective prospects within the nation. Please, infer for your self. With an unrelenting motor and shot-making means matched by an equally eccentric persona, it was a no brainer that the perfect participant in his class is taking the pen to assist formally relaunch our historic Basketball Diary. 

However extra on that later. That is now. And now could be Dybantsa’s time. He staked that declare not too way back. 

“Once I was in third grade, I had the dream of going to the NBA, nevertheless it wasn’t actually lifelike till Covid 12 months. That’s once I began taking it loopy critical,” Dybantsa says. “There have been no gyms out there and I discovered myself simply figuring out exterior each day. I simply took off. That’s when the rankings began coming, that’s when the eye began coming and I used to be like, This might be a actuality.” 

After dominating the native New England competitors as a freshman—posting 19.1 factors, 9.6 rebounds and a couple of.5 blocks a contest—actuality set in additional this previous June when Dybantsa elected to switch to nationwide powerhouse Prolific Prep. The elevated competitors plus transferring in with a bunch household—on high of residing on the other coast as your quick household—can be a tricky transition for any teenager. 

“Essentially the most difficult half [about being AJ] is simply individuals forgetting that I’m a child,” Dybantsa tells SLAM. “Like, I’m 17 years previous, I’ve a life exterior of basketball. However they simply see the web aspect of me so they simply suppose every thing’s flowers and butterflies, when it’s actually not.” 

Whereas Dybantsa finds his footing, he leans on the life classes and work ethic instilled in him by his Congolese father and Jamaican mom. “Nothing’s given to you, every thing is earned,” he says of his dad and mom’ reminders. “It was huge for me in my life improvement.”

Faculties are swarming, the League’s already inside view and he simply signed on the dotted line with The Swoosh. SLAM has been overlaying highschool hoopers for a minute (30 years, tbh!) and we are able to say with confidence, the following modern-day highschool famous person is right here, and his title is AJ Dybantsa. 


Portraits by Marcus Stevens.



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