The only British player to get drafted into the NBA in the last decade - with Ryan Richards - Ep. 62 - Hoopsfix.com

The only British player to get drafted into the NBA in the last decade – with Ryan Richards – Ep. 62

In Episode 62 of the Hoopsfix Podcast we sit down with the only British player to be drafted in the last decade, San Antonio Spurs draft pick Ryan Richards.

The Great Britain Senior international was selected with the 49th pick in the 2010 draft, and though never ending up on the final roster in the NBA, has gone on to play all over the world in places ranging from Switzerland, to Iran, Mexico, Austria, Estonia, Georgia, Hungary, Greece, Poland, Lebanon and most recently the UK in the BBL.

Now 29 years old, he looks back on his career so far, from first picking up a ball through to signing in Spain as a 15 year old, the NBA draft process and the multitude of countries he has lived and worked.

In this 1 hour 45 minutes episode, hear from Ryan on:

  • The decision to sign in Belgium this season
  • How COVID-19 is impacting Belgium
  • Having a stake in the Kent Panthers and the vision for the club
  • Launching his own camp that had to be cancelled this summer
  • How the game has evolved to give him greater longevity in his career
  • What he does with his down time in-season
  • His weight loss this off-season, dropping over 45lbs
  • How he first got into basketball through his older brother
  • The influence of the and-1 mixtapes
  • The impact Joel Freeland and Ashley Hamilton had on his aspirations and early basketball development
  • Playing for the England national team as a junior
  • When the European clubs came knocking to try and recruit him
  • The wooing process with Estudiantes and Gran Canaria
  • Signing a professional contract as a teenager and having few people in England to turn to for advice
  • His relationship with Rob Orellana and his mismanagement
  • Playing in the Nike Hoop Summit as 15 years old
  • Being hidden away after his performance at the Hoop Summit and drawing the attention of the likes of Coach K and Calipari
  • Being take advantage of as a youngster and people looking out for their own self-interest
  • How he was handled as a teenager affected his ability to trust people in his career
  • The European route versus the American route for player development
  • How much you can earn in Europe on a junior contract
  • The NBA draft process and his performance at the Combine blowing up his profile
  • Where he was on draft night and finding out he was selected by the San Antonio Spurs
  • What happened the year after he was drafted and the rehab process
  • Chasing stability and acceptance
  • His relationship with the Spurs over the years and why he thinks he never ended up getting on the final roster
  • Advice he would give to his younger self
  • Whether or not he still thinks he could end up on an NBA roster
  • Being embraced in Asia playing in Iran and his love for Persian culture
  • The impact travelling has had on his own personal development
  • His thoughts on the BBL and his experiences playing in it
  • Whether or not he would want to invest in a BBL franchise
  • Representing the GB Senior Men and if he aims to continue being involved
  • And much, much more!
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 hereOvercastStitcher, and Google Podcasts.

You can support Hoopsfix’s work in helping to grow British basketball on Patreon.

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