Whilst the world is locked down during the coronavirus pandemic, two British basketball stars, Luol Deng and Pops Mensah-Bonsu, set up a series of live discussions, hosted on Instagram Live, and have granted us permission to repost on the Hoopsfix podcast feed.
In Episode 6, aired on April 13th 2020, it was the one we’ve all been waiting for, as they spoke about British Basketball, the Great Britain set up in the run up to the London 2012 Olympics, and more.
Hear from the duo on:
The build up to London 2012, helping the GB program rise through the ranks
Having to earn their spot at the London 2012 Olympics, and not qualifying automatically as the host nation unlike every other sport
The issues around insuring Luol Deng’s contract to play for the national team
Some of the experiences on the road around Europe and the more precarious situations
How they fed off each other as leaders of the GB team
When their relationship with the programme started going downhill
Their regrets about not voicing opinions on lack of coaching staff from the inner cities
How they felt too many staff involved with the program were there for the money and not the love
How they felt the Olympics was a huge opportunity to change the game in the country
Their frustrations around funding of the programme from UK Sport
Not being involved in the decision making and not feeling like their voices were being heard
Luol asking GB to be a part of his camp and them not ever getting involved
How Pops got rejected from an application to be on the Basketball England board for not being qualified
What Jimmy Rogers taught Luol Deng about life
Joe White’s training regime with Pops
Luol’s frustration with the cost of facility-hire in London
How they both want to see British basketball grow
The process of hiring an agent
Pops being regularly recognised as football player Yaya Toure
Facing off against Team USA in Manchester, and what happened when they saw Kobe out the night before the game
What they would do to build British basketball
What their workout regimes looked like as pros
Experiences at the London 2012 Olympics and being in the Olympic Village
The show has been approved on iTunes – find it here and please subscribe to automatically receive new episodes straight to your phone/computer/tablet – if you could give us a review/rating it would be much appreciated to help the podcast spread far and wide, meanwhile it is also on Spotify here, Overcast, Stitcher, and Google Podcasts.
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