Ariel Hukporti, Bobi Klintman, AJ Johnson and Rocco Zikarsky were among the Next Stars to have a big impact in Round 14.

8 Jan
By Rob Burton for

NBL24's class of Next Stars is looming as one of the top groups of emerging hoops talent anywhere in the world.

Stay informed as to how each of the competition's brightest stars played on the weekend with NBL Media's Next Stars Wrap.

For more information on the NBL's Next Stars program, visit: NBL Next Stars on Twitter | Instagram | TikTok | Website

With every week that goes by, this crop of Next Stars are playing more minutes and producing bigger numbers across the league, as highlighted by some big performances in Round 14 of Hungry Jack's NBL action.

Ariel Hukporti looks right in the mix for the NBL’s Next Generation Award, with the German center a picture of consistency so far this season.

Averaging 8.4 points, 7.4 rebounds and 1.4 blocks a game across 17 minutes of action, he's been a key part of Melbourne United's ladder-leading run.

On a split weekend for Dean Vickerman's team, Hukporti averaged 10 points, 5 rebounds and 1.5 blocks in two games, to continue his rise, both in NBL24 and across NBA Draft boards.

Bobi Klintman be looking to build on his consistency in the latter part of the season, but he's proven he can score, and score fast when he has the chance.

Klintman knocked down 16 points and grabbed five rebounds in the Taipans' clash against Tasmania, 

That follows a 24-point haul just over a week earlier. Currently projected in the top 20 by many NBA Draft experts, Klintman is building an impressive portfolio of standout games.

Opportunities have been hard to come by for AJ Johnson, but the 18-year-old has enjoyed season-high minutes over his past two outings and rewarded coach Justin Tatum's faith.

Johnson scored a season-high 11 points in the win over the Phoenix, with a perfect three-from-three from range.

Rocco Zikarsky, or as he's become known, 'Blocko', was in full flight against Sydney and made the going tough for Jordan Hunter, with three huge rejections in the space of a few minutes.

He's not getting huge minutes, but he's having a great impact, with six points, two rebounds and four blocks in 11 minutes.

In New Zealand, Mantas Rubstavicius was up and running early, with eight first half points, but fell just short of extending his run of double-figure games to seven, as the Wildcats surged late.

It's been a tough few weeks for the Sydney Kings, but Alex Toohey continues to log valuable minutes.

Toohey scored eight points, grabbed six rebounds and registered a steal against Brisbane, coming off a five-point, four-rebound game three days earlier.

Trentyn Flowers will be hoping to get back on the court on Thursday against Sydney, while number one NBA Draft prospect Alex Sarr missed the Wildcats' win due to a minor hip strain.

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