DJ Wagner Gets Next: From FIBA ​​U17 Gold to College Basketball Commitments, Meet the Third Generation NBA Set to Make History

For these of you who do not know DJ Wagner, now’s the time to get to know.

Wagner is the #1 ranked participant in the highschool class of 2023. He is a fast and crafty combo guard, standing at 6 ft 3 ft 165 kilos heading into his senior 12 months at Camden Excessive Faculty in New Jersey.

The 17-year-old is a three-tier scorer who does most of his assault injury from dribbling, and is ready to flip right into a nook to go downhill and soak up contact to complete off the sting or cease at a dime and pull up. A jacket, glove, or jumper. His pace is uncanny for his age, he all the time performs inside his sport with nice physique management. Opponents cannot pace it up or gradual it down because it adjustments gears and course at will to bypass its encounter and shove it into the protection’s enamel or make use of different ahead shot creation strikes to create house and attain a retrograde leap.

Merely put: Wagner is a bucket.

It’s a bulldog with a agility to deal with and a aggressive perspective that comes from a well-known household of collars.

His father, Daguan, is broadly thought of probably the greatest highschool gamers of all time. He averaged 42.5 factors per sport as much as Dropped 100 factors in a single match. After taking on Memphis below coach John Calipari, Daguan went on to develop into the No. 6 choose general within the 2002 NBA Draft.

Previous to that, DJ’s grandfather, Milt, was a university star in Louisville, the place he helped lead the Cardinals to the NCAA Championship in 1986. Milt additionally reached the NBA, the place he was chosen with the eleventh choose within the second spherical of the 1986 draft.

DJ is on his strategy to making his personal strategy to the league, together with his most up-to-date achievement being a gold medal with Staff USA on the FIBA ​​U-17 Basketball World Cup in Spain. The championship helped Wagner achieve invaluable expertise as he prepares for his ultimate highschool season and a giant determination forward.

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“It was a extremely enjoyable expertise, taking part in in opposition to completely different groups from everywhere in the world,” Wagner advised TSN. “It is actually cool to see how completely different basketball is world wide and the way completely different it’s to play in opposition to different nations.”

America handled its opponents and received seven matches With a median margin of 41 factors. It was Wagner’s first time leaving the USA, so he and his colleagues had been eager to grab the chance. Once they weren’t on the health club, they took a while to get pleasure from Spain by accessing the seaside and boardwalk exterior the lodge. However competing alongside a few of the different high highschool gamers the nation has to supply has given Wagner loads of apply with some intense battles the place he can work in his taking part in areas to arrange for the subsequent stage.

“Taking part in the ball, filling the lanes as I’m going, simply little issues like that to assist me enhance my sport,” Wagner mentioned.

As a prolific combo bouncer and scorer, it should not shock you that Wagner is contemplating a movie about star guards like Damian Lillard, Stephen Curry, and Kyrie Irving.

extra: Lillard indicators profitable contract extension with Path Blazers

“There are completely different gamers the place I can be taught various things from their sport and they’re all doing very well, after which I simply attempt to put that into my sport,” Wagner mentioned. “(My coaches) simply advised me to observe completely different gamers and be taught from all of them.

“Then they attempt to present me the drill once I’m practising so as to add completely different instruments to assist with my sport.”

Whereas watching the tape and studying from the perfect on the earth has been the important thing to the success of many potential shoppers, having a relationship with the present NBA star is even higher. Wagner has an particularly shut relationship with Jalen Brunson, a New Jersey native who simply signed an enormous contract with the New York Nicks this off season.

Bronson’s father, Rick, was the coach of Wagner Excessive Faculty in Camden throughout his first three seasons. He lately signed as an assistant with the Knicks for the 2022-23 season.

“He is an important participant,” Wagner mentioned of Bronson. “It gave me some information of the sport as nicely.

“I educated with him many instances. I realized various things to coach with. Completely different workout routines to assist me in my sport.

“He is working arduous,” Wagner mentioned emphatically.

extra: Bronson’s contract with the Knicks raises a $104 million query: Is he a star?

Wagner’s aim is to sooner or later line up in opposition to Bronson and different NBA stars within the league. It’s the aim of many younger individuals. However Wagner can also be chasing historical past in his quest to make the NBA.

Bronson He is likely one of the many second-generation NBA gamers within the league Instantly. Wagner has a singular alternative to develop into the primary ever third era A participant in NBA historical past behind his father, Daguan, and grandfather Milt.

“It could be an important honor,” he advised TSN. “An excellent honor.” “Simply know I am coming after two nice gamers like that, simply understand how nice they had been and the legacy they’ve made for themselves. Simply having the ability to stand behind them and even tie my footwear, whether or not it is in faculty or within the NBA, is simply an honor.”

And with all due respect to music pops, Wagner mentioned he and his dad compete over every part.

“We is perhaps within the health club after which begin going through one another and issues like that. We’re a aggressive household, so we all the time prefer to compete.”

Though he laughed when he admitted that he had not defeated his father but.

“We have not performed shortly, so perhaps I can now.”

Wagner is the perfect recruiter within the nation, however he has not but made his official determination about his future plans. Nonetheless, he echoed the identical scheme of TSN that he had initially advised Matt Norlander on CBS final August.

“I will faculty for positive,” Wagner mentioned. “Proper now, I am simply having fun with the method. I attempt to actually see my choices by way of. Simply having fun with the method and taking it sooner or later at a time. However as of now, I will faculty for positive.”

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Regardless of being the #1 ranked participant, Wagner stays poised and would not take the method as a right.

“I get pleasure from it,” Wagner continued, “It is a once-in-a-lifetime expertise.” Not each baby has the fitting to decide on the place they need to go to varsity or to simply accept free faculty presents.

“I get pleasure from each little a part of it. I really feel like I am fortunate to solely get one present from any faculty. So I simply get pleasure from it, happening completely different visits and stuff like that.”

It would not get extra humble than that.

Wagner would finally select between elite colleges resembling Kentucky, Louisville, Memphis, Villanova, and lots of extra. However as he returns subsequent season, he’ll be taking a while to do the issues he loves like taking part in Name of Responsibility: Warzone or operating numbers together with his favourite participant, Lillard, in NBA 2K.

From public college phenomenon to future faculty star to the first-ever third-generation participant in NBA historical past, DJ Wagner has earned a following.

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