Johnnies Officially Sign Delarosa, Thomas

St. John’s head on Monday announced the signings of Christ The King center Adonis Delarosa and forward Keith Thomas out of Westchester Community College.

Delarosa committed in April, and Thomas committed in May. They will add frontcourt depth to a team that lost JaKarr Sampson, Orlando Sanchez and God’sgift Achiuwa.

“We are pleased to sign two prospects from New York as we bolster the frontline depth of our roster,” said head coach Steve Lavin, who has signed eight recruits out of New York high schools or junior colleges in his Red Storm tenure.

Delarosa, the 2013-14 New York Daily News Queens Player of the Year, helped guide Christ the King to back-to-back city and state Federation championships as a junior and senior. Ranked by ESPN as a three-star recruit and the 14th-best high school senior in the state of New York, Delarosa garnered first team All-City and first team All-Queens honors from the Daily News this past season after averaging 12 points and 12 rebounds. The Middle Village, N.Y., native also earned first team All-Queens accolades from the Daily News as a junior. To read more of this story, click here

St. John’s Sampson to Play With Sixers’ Summer League Team

jakarrNEW YORK — St. John’s forward JaKarr Sampson went undrafted in Thursday’s NBA Draft, but it didn’t take him long to find a team interested in his services.

The 6-foot-9 Sampson, who attended the same Ohio high school as LeBron James and was the Big East Rookie of the Year in 2012-13, will play for the Philadelphia 76ers summer league team in Orlando.

“Literally the second the draft was over I got a call from both [Sixers GM] Sam Hinkie and [Sixers coach] Brett Brown with both telling me they love JaKarr and want him on their Summer League team,” Seth Cohen, Sampson’s agent, told “I have to believe that JaKarr will get a fair shot and opportunity.” To read more of this story, click here

St. John’s Pulls Out of Dominic Artis Recruitment

Following an internal review, St. John’s is no longer recruiting former Oregon point guard Dominic Artis, a source familiar with the situation told

St. John’s decision to discontinue the recruitment was independent of the decision made Monday at the University of Oregon, the source said.

Oregon on Monday said that three former basketball players — Artis, Damyean Dotson and Brandon Austin — have been suspended as students for a minimum of four years, and up to 10 years, as a result of rape allegations involving a freshman student. To read more of this story, click here

Dominic Artis May Commit to St. John’s, School Conducting Due Diligence

Former Oregon point guard Dominic Artis may soon commit to St. John’s but the school is also conducting due diligence on the matter.

“I think so, I think so,” Mark Olivier of the Oakland Soldiers said by phone of a possible commitment during or following Artis’s upcoming weekend visit. “They’re a great school. It’s a private school. You gotta remember, Dominic came from a private school so it’s a really good fit. Going back to his roots. He was thinking about St. John’s during that time [when he was first recruited].”

Artis and St. John’s coach Steve Lavin are both California natives, and Lavin recruited Artis the first time around before he ultimately landed at Oregon. To read more of this story, click here

Former Oregon Point Guard Dominic Artis to Visit St. John’s

Former Oregon point guard Dominic Artis will visit St. John’s this weekend, sources confirmed to

St. John’s coach Steve Lavin recruited Artis in high school and should Artis commit to the Johnnies, he would have to sit one year per NCAA regulations before having two years of eligibility.

The 6-foot-1 Artis was one of three players — along with Brandon Austin and Damyean Dotsondismissed last month from the Oregon program after they were not charged despite accusations of rape from an incident on March 8. The DA’s office “no-filed” charges in the sexual assault.

Artis averaged 4.1 points and 2.2 assists last season for the Ducks. To read more of this story, click here

After Whirlwind Time at St. John’s, Orlando Sanchez Looking to Open NBA’s Eyes

Orlando SanchezBy JOSH NEWMAN
Special to ZAGSBLOG

NEW YORK – Orlando Sanchez may have played just one season at St. John’s, but it took a lot of doing just to get him on the floor.

A 6-foot-9, 230-pound native of the Dominican Republic, Sanchez and Monroe (N.Y.) College teammate Marco Bourgault committed to head coach Steve Lavin in April 2012. Eligibility issues soon arose, partly because Sanchez was trying to become a first-year player at the age of 24, but then because he logged time with the Dominican Republic National Team in 2010.

Thanks in part to the support of legal counsel in the fight against the NCAA, Sanchez gained one year of eligibility in 2013-14, when he averaged 7.4 points and 5.6 rebounds for the 20-13 Red Storm.

With all of that behind him and with a productive season in the books, Sanchez is now trying to make the leap to the professional level, whether it be the NBA or otherwise.

“If I go to the NBA, I can play different positions, I can fill a role no matter where I am on the floor,” Sanchez told at the RBA Showcase on Sunday afternoon at Basketball City. “All the time at St. John’s, I was playing in different spots. I think I proved I was coachable and showed I was comfortable no matter where I was on the floor.”

To read more of this story, click here

Ahmed Hamdy to Visit St. John’s

Ahmed Hamdy, a 6-foot-9 transfer from Houston, will visit St. John’s June 2, he confirmed to

Hamdy is considering three or four others schools but no visits have been set.

A native of Egypt, Hamdy did a postgraduate year at Trent Internationale before going to Houston, where he did not play last season because he was ineligible.

St. John’s has already landed 6-11 Christ the King big man Adonis Delarosa and 6-8 Westchester Community College forward Keith Thomas.

The news was first reported by

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Robert Carter Jr. Could Decide After St. John’s Visit

Transferring Georgia Tech big man Robert Carter Jr. is currently on a visit to St. John’s.

If all goes well, it’s possible he won’t take any more visits and could commit to the Johnnies tomorrow when he leaves the Queens school or later this week.

“We might like it to a point that we don’t have to go anywhere else,” Winfred Jordan, Carter Jr.’s AAU coach, told by phone Monday. “He could stop right now.”

Jordan said Carter Jr. is also considering South Carolina, Maryland, Baylor and Texas, but no other visits are planned. To read more of this story, click here

Lavin Confirms Duke-St. John’s Series Will Resume

LavinDuke will visit St. John’s at Madison Square Garden in January or February of 2015, and the Johnnies will then travel to Cameron Indoor Stadium the following season, St. John’s coach Steve Lavin confirmed Monday.

It had previously been reported that the meeting next season will take place Jan. 31, but St. John’s AD Chris Monasch said no date had been finalized.

The two teams last met Jan. 28, 2012 at Cameron Indoor Stadium, with Duke holding off the Johnnies, 83-76, despite 30 points from Maurice Harkless, now with the Orlando Magic. To read more of this story, click here