- National Teams
The London Lions secured the 2022-23 BBL championship after an 88-75 win over the Surrey Scorchers at the CopperBox Arena on Friday night.
They secured the title with six games to spare – a record – as they add the Championship title to the trophy cabinet, alongside the BBL Cup, which they secured in January.
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“Seasons are long,” Lions Head Coach Ryan Schmidt told Sky Sports.
“We started this back in August, playing domestically in the BBL, EuroCup, Trophy, the Cup, it’s a lot of games, it’s a lot of travel, but these guys have shown up to work and been professional through and through from day 1.
“I’m just happy for these guys. Championships are won through organisations; we’ve got a great ownership group, we’ve got great management, our GM Brett Burman did a heck of a job putting this roster together, good coaching staff. I’m just happy to see us able to capitalise, win the regular season championship and move into playoff mode.”
With their victory over Surrey – which didn’t come easy, they also needed Leicester to beat Bristol, which was done comfortably, 106-89.
The trophy was presented by Steve Nelson, who won the title 30 years ago to the day with Worthing Bears – as he became the first father son duo with his son Luke, to both win the BBL Championship.
“I’m blessed to say he’s been a very big part of my basketball career,” Lions and GB guard Luke Nelson said.
“From a young age he’s been a lot of games, of course it’s special to have him here, but it’s always special. Winning a championship is always a big deal no matter who is in the crowd, who is around but seeing him here, having him around is really special.”