|“||I dig guys who refuse to give up, even when the odds are against them||”|
—Chiaki Hanazono, to Sora Kurumatani
Chiaki Hanazono (花園 千秋 Hanazono Chiaki) is Kuzuryū High's primary point guard and an excellent all-rounder who is able to play Small Forward, Power, Forward, Center and the older twin brother of Momoharu Hanazono.
Chiaki has an 'afro' hairstyle with robust, sharp features, facial hair, and a towering athletic physique, which may cause him to precede as an intimidating individual to others. His jersey number is 7, and he wears 'Air Force 1 Mid' sneakers.
Chiaki was the first to show Sora Kurumatani kindness and he has a carefree personality who does unusual things, such as taking a dump anywhere and likes to make errands for others. However, he doesn't care to be involved with the basketball team in the way his brother is and is not someone to be messed with. He dislikes weaklings, but finds an exception for Sora, saying he likes guys that don't give up easily.
In contrast to Momoharu Hanazono's reason to give up playing basketball, which was his insecurities to himself, Chiaki's was because of hopeless situations in the past, such as a huge point deficit in a game. For him, there is no point in trying if the outcome is already decided. But after seeing the Kuzu basketball team still fighting despite a clear impending loss against Maru High, he decided to join late in the game and end it with a basket.
He has a tendency to peep on girls.
During middle school, their school was up against the top team and as expected were behind by a huge point difference. As the second half was about to start, he went missing. Momoharu went to find him and discovered that he bought a candy at a nearby store. It was that time he realized that his twin brother had given up on basketball.
Chiaki is a genius with an incredible court vision, incredible ball handling abilities and immense strength that allows him to play the Center or Power Forward position with his size. Although primarily a Point Guard due to his playmaking abilities, he is an all-arounder that can play any position. He can also be effective as a Small Forward due to his mid-range shooting. Nao Nanao, the club manager strongly believes that his ideal position would be a "Point Forward", a playstyle which means a playmaking forward. Because of it, he is a huge threat in the defense because he keeps them guessing whether to pass or shoot, which benefits their offence greatly.
However, he is weak in defense and rarely contributes to blocking and rebounding but his great eye for ball anticipation to go for steals make up for it. His main weakness is his pace and free throws as he easily succumbs under pressure.
- The name Chiaki means "thousand" (千) (chi) and "autumn" (秋) (aki).
- Chiaki's surname Hanazono means "flower, blossom" (花) (hana) and "garden" (園) (sono/zono).
- The Hanazono twins' respective play styles are the exact opposite of one another where Chiaki excels in offense while Momoharu Hanazono in defense.
- Chiaki's design is possibly likened after Tomomi Nomiya, the protagonist from Takehiko Inoue's Real (manga) as they both have similar hair and all-around skill with the game of basketball.
- "So you've told those guys that you want to play ball with them? I've said this already. Kuzu High's basketball team doesn't get together to play at all." - to Sora Kurumatani (Chapter 4)
- "Remember this certain things are always passed down to others." - to Sora Kurumatani (Chapter 4)
- "If you pass it out to someone else they will have to score. I find it fun to use people. That's why I became a point guard. But that was yesterday. Today, it's time to move on!! From here on out, I will get my points myself" - to himself (Chapter 119)