98' 6-2 CG Lindell Wigginton (Oak Hill, VA/Stackhouse Elite)
He could be the biggest athlete to come out of Nova Scotia since NHL superstar Sidney Crosby. This past season Lindell Wigginton enjoyed a breakout season for the ages. In only his second season south of the border he became a National Champion at Oak Hill under legendary head coach Steve Smith.
All this after Duke commit Harry Giles went down with injury. Wigginton was wonderful filling in the void as a primary scorer. So much for whispers that incoming Oak Hill point guard Matt Coleman was going to take Wiggintons minutes. Battling with Coleman alongside a healthy Harry was competition that Wigginton’s camp say he was ready to relish,
"After we did our research on Coleman he was a pass first point guard that could run a team, where Lindell is a scoring point guard that can also run a team, but can get you buckets at the end of a clock situation too," Lindell’s uncle Colter Simmonds told Canadian Ballers in February. "So there was a good chance Smith would have them both on the floor together in late game situations,” he added.
Lindell Wigginton (Oak Hill) the top PG in 2017 Canadian class.
Wigginton was prepared to battle and scrap for his moment as long as we has given a fair shake to. Standing 6-2 tall with roots in North Preston and Halifax's Uniacke Square, Wigginton is one of the best point guards in Canada. Oh yeah, he led Oak Hill in scoring too as a junior. Simmonds always had confidence in his nephews ability but also admits that the Giles injury may have been a blessing in disguise,
“Without a doubt. The injury opened up the door for Lindell to step in and be the guy a coach can call on in tough situations. God works in mysterious ways,” said Simmonds.
In terms of Lindells development the debate of his traditional point guard skills and versatility to play in a half court setting have now suddenly stopped. Something Simmonds felt was always far-fetched from the jump,
“In my opinion Lindell can play the off guard, point, combo, hybrid.... When he needs to run a show he does his job. If his team needs him to get buckets down the stretch he can do that too. This summer is going to be big for him where he is going to be able to show he can run an offense, run a team. The kids in a special situation where his high school team needs him to score and in the summer he’s going to be a leader and run a team,” Simmonds shared about the situation.
Colter Simmonds looking over nephew Wigginton's shoulder.
Lead indeed, so far playing for Stackhouse Elite on the Adidas Gauntlet Wigginton has been as advertised. This time in a lead guard role eliminating any concern of his floor general skills. Through eight games during the Spring, Stackhouse Elite finished 4-4. Wigginton avearged 16.3 points, 4.4 assists and 3.0 rebounds per game.
So the number one ranked 1998 born prospect in Canada is the leading scorer on a national champion in America. Also battle tested and proven as a lead point guard on a sneaker circuit. What will his haters say now?
Well some are questioning why LW doesn’t play in the Nike EYBL? In true Nova Scotia fashion Wiggintons camp is resting it’s laurels on the old mantra 'loyalty brings royalty.' Playing AAU ball with Stackhouse Elite is deeper than just playing against elite competition. It’s about a humbling opportunity to be under the tutelage of a former NBA all-star Jerry Stackhouse and gaining a life-long mentor-ship from one of the best to do it.
“Loyalty comes before everything. That’s where we are at with that. As far as what Stack has done is he’s mentored me, he’s mentored Lindell in this whole basketball thing and how this stuff all works. It’s helped prepare us mentally and physically with what were going to be expecting with the recruitment and all that. It’s stuff that’s invaluable.” said Simmonds.
You are reading about one of the more feel good stories in Canadian basketball that doesn’t get enough publicity. We’re talking a 17 year old kid from two marginalized communities Uniack Square and North Preston reaching plateaus against all odds. Kids in those communities look up to Wigginton and he’s conducted himself like a true leader given all the excitement and attention that he’s receiving south of the border. Admirable how he wants to be ‘that one’ from the community to be successful and show kids you can make it.
Natalie Vast once said 'pioneers may be picturesque figures, but they are often rather lonely ones'. This is the case unfortanetly with Wigginton; unheralded outside his community and across Canada. A surprise considering what Lindell has accomplished at his age is no different from what Sidney Crosby did in junior hockey. Crosby just played a different sport.
Tag(s): Canadian Ballers