ESPN is airing 15 games of the Sierra Canyon Trailblazers this year starting November 21 and finishing February 8. It bears to reason, given the hype surrounding the whole team if only because of the presence of two certain players. No, I’m not talking about top-tier ballers Ziaire Williams—No. 5 of the 2020 class—and Brandon Boston Jr.—2020 No. 13. I’m also not referencing Terren Frank—2020 No. 110—nor Amari Bailey—2022 No. 10—but rather the other two, the glaring ones of famed ascendance. Some Bronny James and Zaire Wade.
The sports cable company is no fool and knows the games will gather attention if only for those names, so they’re banking on them as much as they can. We’re still some years away from watching James Jr. making it to the league, and more than a few months from watching Wade Jr. make the jump to the pros too, but people are eager to watch both of them play if only for the potential mind fantasies they bring with them.
To have both of those two kids—and again, don’t forget about Ziaire and BJ, who are the real real deals of this team—playing on TV is great, but so is the fact that basketball is played between two teams facing each other. That means that while Sierra Canyon will be at one side of the court in every game, the other part of the wood will be populated by other young-uns of no lesser talent.
Don’t get caught in the Blazers wave and look beyond LeBron and Dwyane’s sons. Here are the best players from the 2020 and 2021 classes that Sierra Canyon will be facing. Don’t hesitate and come back to this article every time Sierra Canyon is on your TV to know who to lock your eyes on.
Nov. 23 - Cathedral Catholic (CA)
The San Diego-based school will be the first team to feature a ranked player on 247Sports composite. It is 2021 no. 77 Obinna Anyanwu, a four-star power forward still pondering his options but already with offers from the likes of Oklahoma, Texas, and LSU on the table.
Dec. 7 - Millenium (AZ)
Keeping with the soft start to the aired games, Sierra Canyon will find another 2021 ranked player in Millenium’s DaRon Holmes. Though a four-star prospect himself, the power forward is “only” the no. 119 player of the class as of today, yet the fight for his services looks to be strong as colleges of high-pedigree such as UCLA, Arizona, and Virginia are already after him.
Dec. 14 - St. Vincent-St. Mary (OH)
If only because of the good old times, this game will smash every audience rating during Sierra Canyon’s slate of televised matches. If you don’t know—who doesn’t know, though—the very own LeBron James started to forge his legend playing at SVSM and jumped straight to the NBA from this high school. Turns out, SVSM currently has 2021 no. 25 Malaki Branham leading the Fighting Irish. That’s far from a player the quality of LeBron’s back in the day, but Branham is a combo guard with the body of an already-built man and the third-best at his position in the nation. No wonder Ohio State has already jumped on him after missing out on James all the way back in 2003.
Jan. 3 - The Patrick School (NJ)
With the flip of the calendar to 2020 the Blazers will meet another couple of 2021 players, among them no less than the No. 1 player from the class Jonathan Kuminga. He will share floor with No. 135 Bretner Mutombo (no relation with Dikembe). Mutombo mans the paint and is a four-star center himself, but Kuminga is the name getting all of the praise he can handle. The forward from Elizabeth (NJ) ranks as the best player overall in the nation right now and is the consensus no. 1 among most if not all scouting services. I could waste two hundred lines of real state here writing the list of colleges hunting for his game, but I’ll just drop a couple of names so you know the type of talent we’re talking about: Duke and Kentucky. That’s it. I said it.
Jan. 4 - Minnehaha Academy (MN)
Just one day after going against Kuminga, Sierra Canyon will finally meet a stud from the 2020 class in no. 10 Jalen Suggs. He will be the best top-tier kid to face the Blazers on ESPN and you better be sure he will be waiting to put on a show under the bright lights of national television. This combo guard is undoubtedly a five-star player and though he has yet to pick a college he seems destined to become a Gonzaga Bulldog. As if that wasn’t enough power, Minnehaha also features the 2021 no. 4 player, Chet Holmgren, a 7-foot center also given five stars in his recruit profile. No wonder he’s the consensus-best big man in the nation at his age, and though he needs to put on some weight he can give fits to anyone on the court. The Minnesota kid will more than probably remain playing in-state comes college-time.
Jan. 11 - Rancho Christian (CA)
This sounds like the biggest of showdowns between Sierra Canyon and any other team in their ESPN schedule of televised games, plus we’re talking about a Cali rivalry here. Rancho Christian comes loaded, too. The Temecula prep has two 2020 ranked players in their team: no. 1 Evan Mobley and no. 61 Dominick Harris. Both Mobley and Harris have already committed to USC and Gonzaga respectively. Mobley is a true-no. 1 in every scouting service. If he holds onto that position he’ll become only the sixth player since 2003 (as far as my database goes) to end with such honor attached to his name, the others being LeBron James, Dwight Howard, Greg Oden, Andrew Wiggins, and RJ Barrett. No slouch.
Jan. 18 - Dominican (WI)
The third of the Antetokounmpos will also face Sierra Canyon in January. The youngest of the brothers is 2020 no. 191 Alex Antetokounmpo, a three-star forward stationed in Milwaukee, same as pros Giannis and Thanasis. I’d say that three-star players are no sure-things to make it big time, but you know how the Greek Freak started and where he’s at now so...
Jan. 20 - Paul VI Catholic (VA)
The school from Virginia will carry three ranked players to the court and two studs among them. Though 2020 no. 327 Josiah Freeman might not be more than a three-star player at this point, Paul VI will also feature 2020 no. 21 Jeremy Roach and 2021 no. 36 Trevor Keels. Just in case you’re not following the recruiting news circuit, Roach is already Duke-bound and ready to roll with the Blue Devils come next season. Keels is still a few months away from making his final choice but he’s a bucket-getter of true quality already on the radar of Florida and Oklahoma State among others.
Feb. 8 - Long Island Lutheran (NY)
Although LI Luth will come with the largest numbers of players ranked in 247Sports boards, none of them is a true stud at this point. This bunch has 2020 no. 56 Andre Curbelo as their go-to man but that might be enough to give Sierra a good scare, though. The Puerto-Rican point guard is the ninth-best at his position and has already given his word to Illinois for next season. Other than Dre, Long Island will feature 2020 no. 162 Zed Key, 2020 no. 349 Jalen Celestine, and 2021 no. 100 Rafael Pinzon.