Who’s MiLaysia Fulwiley? Why’s Magic Johnson Ranking Her Above NBA Superstars Including LeBron James and Stephen Curry?

Published 11/07/2023, 1:41 AM EST

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When South Carolina took on Notre Dame in Paris during the ongoing NCAA season, it looked as if the next generation of basketball players was taking over. The rookies on both teams stole the spotlight with their outstanding performances. But South Carolina point guard MiLaysia Fulwiley stood out. Her fantastic lay-up performance, which included running coast-to-coast, swiftly faking a dish to Kamilla Cardoso in the post, and going up and under the last defender, created a huge impact. And she did all of this in the first ten minutes of her collegiate career.

And no wonder Magic Johnson placed her above the NBA superstars LeBron James and Steph Curry, given the special move she delivered on her game. It is not too early to say that Fulwiley is the new future of South Carolina. She has a very promising NCAA career, as her skills show she is destined for greatness.

Who’s this new sensation?


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MiLaysia Fulwiley, a Columbia native, was signed as another above-the-rim talent by the Gamecocks. The No. 13 prospect and No. 3 point guard in the Class of 2023 is seeking to win her fourth straight high school state championship with W.J. Keenan.

In November, Fulwiley committed to South Carolina. The 5-foot-7 Fulwiley showed off her vertical jump with a tremendous slam. She rushed up to the ball and touched it over the hoop and the move became viral instantly. ESPN, in collaboration with SportsCenter, posted the video of “Fancy Finish” on their Instagram handle.


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Fulwiley scored more than 2,000 points as a junior at Keenan. In 2021-2022, she led the Raiders in scoring with 29.6 points, 8.8 rebounds, 6.8 assists, and 4.6 steals per game. Fulwiley has been doing this since she was in elementary school. Throughout her career at WJ Keenan High School, Fulwiley was the all-time leading scorer. In her senior year, she was named to the All-America team.

A move that wonderstruck basketball stars

Magic Johnson claimed on Twitter that Fulwiley was just superior to some of the most skilled players currently playing. With just three minutes left before halftime, Fulwiley skillfully sidestepped the Notre Dame defenders, swiped the ball behind her back, and stunned the South Carolina audience and NBA legend Magic Johnson with an amazing layup.

Johnson was quick to react: “I’m watching the women’s basketball game between South Carolina and Notre Dame right now, and I just saw the best move in all of basketball, including the pros like LeBron, Steph, KD, Victor, and Jokic. Everyone must see the coast-to-coast, behind-the-back move by freshman guard MiLaysia Fulwiley from South Carolina. WOW!”

Many other basketball players expressed their admiration for the South Carolina freshman. Kelsey Plum, Steph Curry, and Kevin Durant were among the famous figures. Curry and Fulwiley have a history together since she previously played for his Curry squad and was taught by the Warriors’ guard.

Stephen Curry also lavished her with compliments, assuring her that he noticed her. He added “I SEE YOU @LAYWITDABUTTER” to the video of her lay-up.


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Fulwiley on her coast-to-coast move

During an interview, Fulwiley revealed that the hoop is her favorite move, one she has been using since high school. She stated, “And I just felt like I was in high school, and that was my favorite move when I was in high school, so I just did it.”

When speaking to ESPN’s Rowe, she explained that her success on the court is due to her consistent practice, both on good and bad days.


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Fulwoley takes credit for her moves, which she has perfected through rigorous practice. With talented players like her, the future of basketball looks very promising.


Written by:

Nima Murugan


One take at a time

Nima Murugan is an NBA writer at EssentiallySports. With a Master's in English Literature, she provides detailed analysis of the games. Nima developed an interest in the NBA after witnessing the greatness of LeBron James and she continues to support the Los Angeles Lakers with passion.
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Edited by:

Bilal Handoo