Connor Mackay met up with London Lions star Kai Williams to talk about his journey from Canada to the BBL.
Kai Williams, one half of the Williams brothers, joined the London Lions in 2015 alongside his brother Jamal, the pair moving from Worcester Wolves after their championship success.
Moving from Canada, Kai made his debut in the BBL on the 26th February 2012 playing for the Cheshire Jets against Newcastle Eagles. “Ever since I started playing basketball I wanted to become a Professional basketball player,” Williams said.
”Coming overseas and eventually on to the UK I was able to make that dream a reality. So I am just here to live out a childhood dream.”
Averaging 13.1 points per game in his first year, Williams has been averaging 10 points in his fourth year with London “This is my fourth year in the UK and every season has been great. My first season was amazing and it has been all great ever since”
Kai came to the UK to enhance his basketball skills and develop in the sport, via playing and coaching. He is well placed to see any differences in how the game is played here and in his native Canada: “The basketball is fairly similar. The rules are the exact same as back in Canada so that hasn’t been a change at all for us which has been great.
“Coaching techniques vary depending on many factors but for the most part everything is almost the same. I would say that the facilities in Canada as a whole are comparable to the facilities here especially on the professional level.”
Before becoming a professional, Williams played for South Dakota State in 2010. This meant a lot of attention, as he was eligible for the NBA draft in 2010. He wasn’t drafted, so playing overseas in the BBL was his next option. “It has allowed my brother and I to start up our own coaching business back home which has been great. Using our experiences and resumes within basketball it has provided us a unique opportunity.”
Coming to the UK Kai has set himself goals, “I have always just wanted to pursue basketball on the highest level attainable for me so I am just extremely thankful for the opportunities I have been given. I’m just taking everything in [my] stride.”