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  • Writer's pictureThe San Juan Daily Star

Top high school basketball circuit making first-ever Stop in PR this weekend

A.J. Dybantsa, a Prolific Prep junior, is widely projected as No. 1 pick in 2026 NBA draft.

4 island teams slated for Saturday & Sunday games

By The Star Staff

For the first time, The Grind Session, an elite high school basketball showcase that has produced nearly 100 NBA stars over the past 10 years, is coming to Puerto Rico.

The three-day event will take place today through Sunday at the Guillermo Angulo Coliseum in Carolina and will feature 13 teams from five states and Puerto Rico, 13 games, and an impressive lineup of some of North America’s top high school prospects.

To put into perspective how good the circuit is: since 2014, more than 2,800 players who have participated in The Grind Session have gone on to play collegiate or professional basketball. More than 20 of those players were chosen in the first round of the past two NBA drafts alone.

Some of The Grind Session’s more notable alumni include Jayson Tatum (Boston Celtics), LaMelo Ball (Charlotte Hornets), DeAndre Ayton (Phoenix Suns), Paolo Banchero (Orlando Magic), Jalen Green (Houston Rockets) and Jamal Murray (Denver Nuggets), just to name a few.

The showcase opens with three games on Friday starting at 5:30 p.m.; continues with six games on Saturday starting at 10:30 a.m., including a star-studded celebrity game; and concludes with three games on Sunday starting at noon.

“Sports are a very important aspect of Puerto Rican culture, and while basketball may not be as popular of a sport on the island as baseball or boxing, it’s rapidly gaining popularity,” said César Vizcarrondo, chief brand officer of The Grind Session. “We’re excited about finally coming to Puerto Rico and look forward to an exciting weekend loaded with truly amazing talent.”

The 13-game slate will be headlined by two massive showdowns featuring three of SBLive’s Top 25 national high school boys basketball teams. Florida’s IMG Academy (#19) will battle Arizona’s Dream City Christian (#20) on Friday night and then California’s Prolific Prep (#4) on Saturday afternoon.

The highly anticipated matchups will feature more than a dozen of the top 100 prospects across the ’24, ’25 and ‘26 classes, including Prolific Prep junior A.J. Dybantsa, who’s already widely considered to be the No. 1 overall pick in the 2026 NBA draft.

“The Grind Session has taken high school basketball to new heights over the past decade, becoming the home and proving ground for some of the most elite prospects and teams,” Vizcarrondo said. “Bringing the circuit to Puerto Rico is another step in our evolution as we continue to serve the elite prep landscape by helping the best compete against the best and pushing the boundaries of elite amateur sports.”

Full schedule of games

Friday, Feb. 2

5:30 p.m. – Victory Rock Prep (Fla.) vs. Albuquerque Prep (N.M.)

7:15 p.m. – DNA Prep (Calif.) vs. Academy of Central Florida (Fla.)

9 p.m. – Dream City Christian (Ariz.) vs. IMG Academy (Fla.)

Saturday, Feb. 3

10:30 a.m. – Ángel P. Millán (Carolina, P.R.) vs. Victory Rock Prep (Fla.)

12:15 p.m. – Chi Prep (Ill.) vs. Kingdome Dorado (P.R.)

2 p.m. – DME Academy (Fla.) vs. DNA Prep (Calif.)

3:45 p.m. – SFBA Trinity Prep (Nev.) vs. Albuquerque Prep (N.M.)

5:30 p.m. – IMG Academy (Fla.) vs. Prolific Prep (Calif.)

6:45 p.m. – Hoopers Next Door vs. True Buckets (CELEBRITY GAME)

8:45 p.m. – Academy of Central Florida (Fla.) vs. Dream City Christian (Ariz.)

Sunday, Feb. 4

Noon – Prolific Prep (Calif.) vs. DME Academy (Fla.)

1:45 p.m. – SFBA Trinity Prep (Nev.) vs. Caguas Private School (P.R.)

3:30 p.m. – Emadrian (Bayamón, P.R.) vs. Chi Prep (Ill.)

Saturdays’ Celebrity Game will feature 16 local basketball, lifestyle and social media personalities.

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