Updated: Jun 11, 2022
To conclude the summer AAU cycle, The Circuit Championship at the Fantastic 40 brought together elite sneaker-affiliated and independent programs under one roof. Taking place at the Tarkanian Basketball Academy in Las Vegas, Pro Insight was on hand to cover the four-day event.
In between games, we caught up with Hansel Donato of Life Christian (FL) and SOH Elite (FL). Standing at 6’6”, Donato flashed his high-level athleticism, creative finishing, passing instincts, and high motor.
As part of the Pro Insight Q&A series, Donato touched on his background, his game, his recruitment update, what he wants to be remembered for, and more.
For the next installment of the Pro Insight Q&A series, we present 2022 prospect Hansel Donato, from Los Mina, Dominican Republic:
Pro Insight: Talk a bit about your background.
Hansel Donato: I’m from the Dominican Republic. I came here for a scholarship and everything. I feel good, thanks to God, that I have had the chance to come to the United States to progress forward.
PI: Do you have any siblings that play sports?
HD: I have four siblings — two sisters and two little brothers. They don’t play sports.
PI: You’re the only one who plays basketball?
HD: Yes, I’m the only one who plays basketball.
PI: Did you play other sports growing up?
HD: Yes, baseball.
PI: For those who haven’t seen you play — what are your strengths?
HD: On the court I like to shoot the 3, attack on the fast break, and pass the ball.
PI: What are some areas of your game you’re trying to improve?
HD: I’m working on my defense and continuing to adapt to the playing systems here.
PI: What are you doing to improve your defense?
HD: Working on it, trying to defend who is in front of me and just practicing the fundamentals.
PI: What are some underrated aspects of your game?
HD: My intensity in how I play and when I do extraordinary things people don’t expect.
PI: Where does that intensity come from?
HD: I get my energy and motivation from my grandmother. Growing up, she taught me to go hard or go home. It’s hard where I come from in the Dominican Republic, there is a “no prisoners mentality” and it’s hard to make it out. I have no other options but to go hard.
PI: What’s the update with your recruitment?
HD: There is a lot of interest, but no official offers yet. (Note: has since received his first official offer from Tennessee State)
PI: What are you looking for in a school of choice?
HD: Adjusting to the scheme of things with any team. Academics are very important for me and my family. Being able to graduate with a good degree. Being a part of the team in any way, shape, or form that the coaches want me to do.
PI: What type of system fits your playing style?
HD: A fast paced system where the ball is moving around. Trying to get up and down the court as much as possible.
PI: Any players you enjoy watching?
HD: Bradley Beal and Kevin Durant.
PI: What do you like to do in your free time?
HD: Play basketball. I’m always playing basketball.
PI: At the end of the day, what do you want to be remembered for?
HD: I’d like to be remembered as a big time player that overcame a lot of obstacles...someone who worked very hard to gain respect from my peers on and off the court....someone who represents his family and holds his family's last name to a high standard.
*Special thanks to Luis Flores for helping translate this interview.