Fantastic 40: Top Performers!

The Pangos Fantastic 40 is back. After a three year hiatus, director Dinos Trigonis brought the event back to Miami for the first time since the spring of 2021. Held at Gibson Park in the heart of Overtown, the 2024 Pangos Fantastic 40 brought programs from the Nike EYBL, adidas 3SSB, Under Armour Association, and New Balance circuits along with many top independent squads from all over the country. Blending the allure of Miami with some high level hoops, the Fantastic 40 reminded everyone in attendance that independent AAU tournaments still have a key spot in today’s sneaker driven grassroots ecosystem.

With teams ranging from 15U through 17U, there were standouts at every division, but here are six players who caught our eye as top performers at the event:

Meleek Thomas, 6’5, SG, New Heights Lightning 17U, 2025
As far as the top player in The Fantastic 40 was concerned, the conversation starts and ends with Meleek Thomas. The Pittsburgh product was absolutely electric, scoring the rock without forcing the issue, showing what he could do with limited bounces en route to an undefeated weekend for the EYBL program. Meleek was an absurd shot creator off of a live dribble, was creative finishing at the rack, and did his best KD/Dirk impression with countless one legged fadeaway jumpers. Already signed to an NIL deal with Roc Nation, Thomas left no doubt in anyone’s mind that he’s a top five player in the class of 2025 nationally.

Cayden Daughtry, 6’0, PG, Florida Rebels 15U, 2027
In the 2027 class, there wasn’t a player at the Pangos Fantastic 40 who was a more confident scorer than Cayden Daughtry. Having put up monstrous stats on the varsity level dating back to his middle school years, Daughtry exudes supreme scoring ability when playing his age group against his peers. He is an electric 3-point shooter, is patient weaving in and out of the lane, and isn’t afraid of contact despite his slender frame. Daughtry holds a number of D1 offers and brings that killer mentality every time he steps on the hardwood.

Jaion Pitt, 6’8, PF, Arizona Unity 17U, 2025
Blending potential with a massive amount of production, Jaion Pitt was the most productive front court player in the 17U division of the Fantastic 40. The Canadian is a beast rebounding on both ends, is an outstanding cutter, and showed surprising vision passing out of double teams or finding teammates in the dunker. Pitt is extending his range beyond the 3-point line and as he continues to gain consistency stretching the defense, his ranking should trend upwards.

Felipe Quinones, 6’5, SG, Jet Academy 16U, 2026
Next in line out of Puerto Rico, Felipe Quinones lived up to his billing at The Fantastic 40. Owning a prototypical build for a two guard, the sophomore showed off a reliable 3-point shot, impacted the game defensively with his length, and has a massive amount of confidence when he has the ball in his hands. Felipe showed everyone in attendance at Gibson Park that he has the makings of a high major guard and will be learning from a good one in Kenny Smith at Jet Academy.

Gustavo Guimaraes, 6’11, C, All Ball 17U, 2025
One of the bigger surprises of the event, both literally and figuratively, was near 7-footer Gustavo Guimaraes of All Ball. The Riviera Prep (FL) big is fresh off a state title, is quite agile running the floor, and looks to finish above the rim at every available opportunity. There is still plenty of room for growth for Gustavo, but between his play with All Ball and with the Brazil 17U team, expect to hear plenty more from him sooner rather than later.

Darius Wabbington, 6’10, C, Arizona Unity 15U, 2027
There wasn’t a single big in the 15U bracket who could come close to stopping Sunnyslope (AZ) product Darrius Wabbington on the block throughout the Fantastic 40. The Arizona big looks for contact, showed off intriguing footwork on the block, and was incredibly confident scoring the ball. Patterning his game after Nikola Jokic, Darius also stepped out to hit a few threes on the weekend, leaving no doubt in anyone’s mind why he’s right there at the top of a very special Arizona 2027 class.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *