Flau’jae Johnson remained in New York for the SLAM Summer Classic in August when she was inquired about the most unforgettable experience of her blossoming basketball profession. She just needed to consider it for a couple of seconds.
“Man, most memorable…well, really this right here, I ain’t never been in nothing like this!” she stated. “Flew out, penthouse, A-Boogie performed, this was crazy. This is probably the highlight of my whole basketball career.”
She most likely ought to’ve included “so far.” In a video game significantly controlled by unicorns, Flau’jae will redefine the concept of the very flexible hooper, thanks to her capability both on and off the court. If you currently understand her name, there’s a likelihood it’s due to her rhyming abilities. Her capability as an MC is the most significant factor she declares almost 650,000 Instagram fans and near to 120,000 YouTube customers—a following that started constructing from the time she appeared on Lifetime’s The Rap Game back in 2017, when she was simply 12 years of ages.
Now a senior at Sprayberry (GA) High in Marietta, the Savannah native has actually never ever stopped polishing her music abilities—check in 2015’s XXL freestyle or the range of songs on her YouTube channel for verification—even as she’s become among the very best gamers in the 2022 class. And yes, she’s got the qualifications to support that claim, too: Defensive MVP at this summer season’s Nike Nationals, and MVP of the SLAM Summer Classic after an efficiency packed with emphasize plays. Increasingly, it appears like there’s very little the 5-10 combination guard can’t do.
“A lot of people go to the next level, but it’s like, who’s really gonna excel?” she states. “I’ve always been the best at my level…When I go to the next level, I don’t want to be no regular player. Every time I step on the floor, I bring that demeanor that nobody else got. I play with a different type of energy.”
She credits her home town for that energy. “Where I’m from, that’s how we get down—we get in your face, we talk, we pop our junk. So that’s what I do, every time.” But her success is down to more than simply strength and a killer crossover. She’s pleased with the grind that permits her to optimize her skill. “I don’t ever let nobody outwork me, ever,” she states. “I work hard. I don’t play around. What you see on the court, it’s like a replica of what I already put in.”
By her own admission, it wasn’t that long ago that basketball was something Johnson did mainly for enjoyable. “I didn’t even know you could go to college for basketball until they started offering me,” she states. “I was focused on my music. It wasn’t even on my mind.”
That altered when it ended up being clear she was a high DI skill, an evaluation verified by a deal list that she just recently narrowed to 5 finalists: Georgia, LSU, Miami, Ole Miss and Texas. Needless to state, basketball is now quite a top priority.
But it’s not the only one. Music remains in her blood—her dad, Savannah rap artist Camoflauge, was eliminated soon prior to Flau’jae was born—and she’s too excellent not to keep at it. And no, it’s not insane to believe she can be elite in both arenas.
“I wanna be like how—no disrespect—Damian Lillard’s doing, but for real, for real. I want to be the first to ever do it, like, for real.”
The video games need extremely various capability, obviously, however whether on the court or on the mic, Flau’jae states there’s a typical thread going through her efficiency.
“My delivery, how I rap, I’m coming for you every time,” she states. “You gonna feel that, like, she talkin’ to me. On the basketball court, I’m coming at you the same way.”
Portraits Jon Lopez and Jonathan Lewis.