Adam Zagoria covers basketball at all levels. He is the author of two books and an award-winning journalist whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide.
Lance Stephenson is focused on playing basketball, not talking about colleges.
“I don’t want to talk,” Stephenson told the Daily News for its high school basketball preview. “Just want to play.”
Lincoln remains the preseason favorite to win its fourth straight PSAL city championship next spring at Madison Square Garden. The Railsplitters return the 6-foot-5 Stephenson, 6-8 Maryland-bound forward James Padgett and lead guard Darwin “Buddha” Ellis.
Stephenson had a rough summer in which he was cut from the USA U-18 National Team, but now he’s entirely focused on leading the Railsplitters against the challengers at Thomas Jefferson, Boys & Girls and elsewhere.
“This is it,” Lincoln coach Dwayne “Tiny” Morton told the Daily News. “Lance realizes that senior year is supposed to be your best year. He understands that.”
Lincoln assistant Kenny Pretlow seconded that.
“I’ve never seen Lance this focused,” Pretlow added. “He’s not talking much, just going about his business.”
Lincoln will appear on the ESPN family of networks at least three times this year, beginning on Dec. 11 against Duncanville (Texas) at 9:30 p.m. The Railsplitters will also appear on ESPN Jan. 19 against Mobile (Al.) LeFlore and Feb. 13 against North Carolina-bound guard Dexter Strickland and St. Patrick of Elizabeth.
As for life after Lincoln, Stephenson is being most heavily recruited by St. John’s, with Kansas, Memphis and USC also involved. Going to Europe has also been mentioned as an option.
(Photo courtesy Daily News)
Adam Zagoria is a Basketball Insider who covers basketball at all levels. A contributor to The New York Times and SportsNet New York (SNY), he is also the author of two books and is an award-winning journalist and filmmaker. His articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide. He also won an Emmy award for his work on the SNY mini-documentary on Syracuse guard Tyus Battle.
A veteran Ultimate Frisbee player, he has competed in numerous National and World Championships and, perhaps more importantly, his teams won the Westchester Summer League (WSL) championships in 2011 and 2013.
He lives in Manhattan with his wife and children.