Tucked away in the Northwest corner of the country stands 6 foot 5 inch, 180 pound Anthony Wroten Jr., a sophomore guard out of Garfield High School. Located in the heart of Seattle, WA, this local phenom has only been a local phenom for a few years when at the 8th grade national's Tony put on a show for the ages. Putting in performances like no other, and achieving heights that had not previous been reached. Players with the caliber of talent such as LeBron James have never done and wooed a crowd in a ways Wroten has. You can view his highlights on Youtube where he's steadily becoming a person of high interest on the national basketball scene.
Young Wroten's blood is saturated in athleticism, with both parents being University of Washington sports stars, and his Aunt Joyce who still to this day will take Tone Tone to the hoop. Being that she was high school All American, and the third woman to play for the historic Harlem Globetrotters, it must not have been too much of a challenge. Tony is also cousins with New York Knicks guard Nate Robinson, so you can see why it wasn't to much of a surprise to see him blossom into a young prodigy.
One might wonder how a 15 year old kid takes in all of this attention. Well for Tone Tone it has been in his life since he was a 6th grader playing for Team Roc. He has the demeanor of a person that has been through this before. Answering questions in a mature manner (almost reminiscent to Lebron's Maturity at a young age). However with his maturity comes humility. He knows what expectations he carries where ever he goes, and he is well aware of what kind of dedication it will take for him to get to the pinnacle.
"I want to become the best and get to the NBA," Wroten said. "And you can't get there without working hard."
That hard work has already payed off. With Wroten putting together a historic season for the Bulldogs. He led his conference in scoring with 20.2 points per game, while chipping in 8.8 boards and 4.0 assists per contest to lead Garfield to the state tournament. He became the first freshman to make Star Times in the 30 years the Seattle Times had been putting together its boys' basketball All-Star teams. As a result of those ridiculous numbers, Wroten has earned himself a spot on the ESPNU 100 Watch List for the Class of 2011. (He's joined on the list by Ross and Gilchrist.)
After such a captivating season Tony was invited to play on the USA select team at the Adidas Nations Tournament in Dallas, TX where he and his team would go on to win, as well as being 1 of only 24 players and 1 of only 2 players from the class of 2011 to be invited to play in the Boost Mobile Elite 24 held at famed Holcomb Rucker Park in Harlem, NY. This would be the stage that Tony would show the fans in Harlem that he was a force to be reckon with. He would step up and take on the challenge of defending three time Elite 24 invitee and New York legend Lance Stephenson. He was out weighed, and younger, but that did not stop him from getting in the face of Stephenson and excepting the challenge. Wroten has that type of swagger that lets everyone see how serious he is about his game.
I know Tony personally, and his work ethic is out of this world. If he surrounds himself with the right people; the sky is the limit!
Stay Tuned for next weeks Prep Baller of the week!