London Lions are back with a bang as they welcome California’s Cal Poly Mustangs to the Copper Box Arena for a showcase fixture. Tip-off is at 7.30pm and tickets are available.
The 2018/2019 season was one to remember for London Lions. Silverware in the shape of the BBL Cup – beating Radisson RED Glasgow Rocks in the final at Arena Birmingham – was followed by the ultimate prize in UK club basketball and a first ever BBL Championship title.
A new season of British Basketball League action is looming but first the London Lions face a glamour warm-up match against NCAA’s Cal Poly Mustangs.
The Mustangs play in the Big Western Conference and have produced NBA players such as David Nwaba (Cleveland Cavaliers) and Joe Prunty (former GB Head Coach and Phoenix Suns Assistant).
Vince Macaulay, Lions Head Coach and BBL Coach of the Year, said, “Having proved ourselves this season winning the Premiership League and the Cup I feel we are ready to take on an NCAA team like Cal Poly Mustangs.
“They have a wealth of fantastic US players and some talented Europeans like Karlis Garoza from Latvia. He was the starting centre for Latvia’s U-18 Men’s National Team at the December 2016 FIBA Europe championship in Turkey and averaged 10.2 points and 6.5 rebounds per six tournament games.
“It’s going to be a massive game and guaranteed to be a heart stopping season opener at the Copper Box.”
Ones to watch: Justin Robinson (pictured above) – the reigning BBL league MVP (most valuable player) was hugely influential for London Lions last season as they struck silverware on two fronts. Also expected on court is Lions’ new signing Jorge Romero. The Spanish guard brings a wealth of experience to the team after a stellar career in his home country in Spanish LEB Gold.
Tip-off is at 7.30pm.
Tickets in advance are available via the ‘Get Tickets’ link.
About the BBL: The British Basketball League (BBL) is the top men’s professional league in the UK. Running from September to May the primary competition is the BBL Championship in which all 12 BBL teams play each other three times over the course of the season. London Lions are the current champions. At the end of the regular season the top eight teams in the BBL Championship progress to the BBL Championship Play-offs. The BBL Championship is considered the primary competition and its winner the number one team that season.
There are two knock-out competitions that run alongside the BBL Championship. The BBL Trophy in which the BBL clubs are joined by guest clubs in a straight knockout competition culminating in the BBL Trophy Final and the BBL Cup which is a straight knock-out competition involving just the BBL clubs which culminates in the BBL Cup Final.
The BBL teams for season 2019/2020 are Bristol Flyers, Cheshire Phoenix, DBL Sharks Sheffield, Esh Group Eagles Newcastle, Leicester Riders, London City Royals, London Lions, Manchester Giants, Plymouth Raiders, Radisson Red Glasgow Rocks , Surrey Scorchers and Worcester Wolves.
(BBL information courtesy of the British Basketball League website).