For Episode 40 of the Hoopsfix Podcast, we sit down with reigning British Basketball League (BBL) MVP, London Lions and GB guard Justin Robinson.
Robinson is one of Jimmy Rogers’ protégés out of the heralded Brixton Topcats programme, and one of the greatest players of his generation.
Having left the UK at 16 to attend High School in the US, the 6’2″ guard ultimately ended up at Blair Academy (not before a couple of stops elsewhere, which you will hear all about!) before attending NCAA Division 1 school Rider on a four year scholarship.
Since turning pro in 2011, Robinson has played in Greece, Cyprus, Sweden, Ukraine, Slovenia, Hungary, and France before returning to the UK for the 2017-18, being one of the first British players in recent years to make the switch to playing domestically despite having offers abroad. He was named BBL MVP at the end of his first season after leading London Lions to their best ever league finish.
In this 90 minute episode, hear from Justin on:
His thoughts on the London Lions’ early season (at which point they were 5-1)
The London City Royals and whether or not he feels they have stolen the Lions’ shine
What made him decide to come back to the UK and play in the BBL
Winning the MVP award in his inaugural season in the BBL
How having young children has changed his outlook on life
Growing up on Cowley Estate in Brixton
His mentality growing up that allowed him to pursue his dreams
The first time he met Jimmy Rogers, his relationship with him and his memories of him
How he first got to the US after Jimmy saw an opportunity when Matthew Bryan-Amaning was being recruited
When he first got put into a Senior game against Hackney as a Junior with Brixton
His famous 71-point game as an Under-18 against Thames Valley
His generation of hoopers that had talent
How he ended up having to escape from his first experience at a high school in Virginia
Dealing with the transition to the US and his thoughts on the competitive mentality
His time at Blair Academy under Joe Mantegna
The recruitment process and when the US colleges came knocking
His time in at Rider and why he wishes he was held more accountable
The process of turning pro and signing with an agent
Advice he would give to a player graduating from college now
Whether or not he has an eye on what’s next when he decides to retire
His international career and the GB programme in the run up to 2012
How he found out he wasn’t going to be involved with the London 2012 Olympic programme
Why he feels you could argue basketball in Britain has got worse since the Olympics
The current state of the BBL
Why the Lions need to do to fill the Copper Box
Advice he would give to young players who want to be where he is now
And much, much more!
As always, I’d love to get your feedback, come back after you’ve listened and lets get some discussion going in the comments.
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