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MVP Cast with Mark Woods

Sports & Recreation Podcasts

Mark Woods presents the leading British basketball podcast, with exclusive in-depth interviews covering the game in the UK and elsewhere. Follow us on social by searching ’The MVP Cast’.


United Kingdom


Mark Woods presents the leading British basketball podcast, with exclusive in-depth interviews covering the game in the UK and elsewhere. Follow us on social by searching ’The MVP Cast’.








The 2023 Playoff Finals Wrap

A rough and ready episode of the MVP Cast from The 02 as London Lions make it a double over Leicester Riders in the BBL and WBBL Playoff Finals - as we hear from Ryan Schmidt, Darien Nelson-Henry, Krumesh Patel, Azania Stewart and Stella Kaltsidou.


The Ryan Schmidt One

London Lions men's head coach Ryan Schmidt joins the MVP Cast. He tells Mark Woods about the learning curve undertaken last season and in mixing with old hands in the EuroCup and the opportunities it has afforded him. We head back to the start of his love affair with basketball in Portland and how injuries took him from playing in the minor leagues towards a career on the sidelines. And we look back on a season in the BBL that could take a route towards three trophies - but with no driving time behind the wheel. More at


The Simon Hosannah One

MCing legend Simon Hosannah joins the MVP Cast. He tells Mark Woods about how he fell into announcing basketball, the big names and big games where he's been the man on the mic, and the work it takes to put on a show. But he also reveals the mammoth change in his life that's put him in a contest of his own - and why it's led him to retire from courtside next month. More at


The Jim Saker and the Trophy finals One

WBBL chair Jim Saker joins the MVP Cast to talk State of the League. Plus reaction following the 2023 BBL and WBBL Trophy finals. Hannah Robb tells us why Leicester Riders will be back, Shanice Beckford-Norton looks inside London Lions win, Azania Stewart explains her retirement - and why she may not be quite ready to finish up. And following Caledonia Gladiators jinx-breaking victory, David Sloan reveals the emotion behind his game-winner, and Gareth Murray tells us what the win means to him. More at


The Patrick Tapé One

Caledonia Gladiators and Ivory Coast big Patrick Tapé joins the MVP Cast.----more---- Amid March Madness, he tells us about his own college days which began with combining books and basketball at Ivy League Columbia University, ended with a stint off the streets of San Francisco, and crammed in a spell under Coach K at Duke University. He recounts the impact of his first trip to the homeland of his father Denis to represent his country in the FIBA World Cup. And we look ahead to the BBL Trophy final against Cheshire Phoenix. More at A Communicated production.


The Jelani Watson-Gayle One

Bristol Flyers guard Jelani Watson-Gayle joins the MVP Cast. He tells us about his transformation from being a footballing hopeful with Leyton Orient to throwing his all into basketball - with huge assists from his mother and older brother. We talk the learnings to becoming a leader, the confidence he gained from going to the States at age 15 that's now being put to good effect in the British Basketball League - and the potential for a call-up from Great Britain. More at


The Harriet Ottewill-Soulsby One

Durham Palatinates centre Harriet Ottewill-Soulsby joins the MVP Cast. She tells Mark Woods about the globetrotting odyssey that saw her grow up across Europe but left her hunting for proper roots in this post-Brexit time. She reveals the rationale behind her decision to return to the Women's British Basketball League, her early leap into the game in Loughborough and what we might learn from hoops in Germany. And she talks her time in Philly - and her Super Bowl picks. More at


The Dirk Wiliams One

Manchester Giants wing Dirk Williams joins the MVP Cast. He tells Mark Woods about combining fatherhood with basketball and the life lessons learnt while growing up in Alabama with hoop dreams. We relive the dunks that won him trans-Atlantic fame and the move he has in mind next. And why a players-only meeting in Manchester can be the spark for the second half of the British Basketball League season. More at


The Dave Owen One

British basketball's numbers guru Dave Owen joins the MVP Cast.----more---- He tells Mark Woods about his drive to chronicle the stats of all our players at home and abroad to give them the recognition they deserve. We talk about his tech development and a push to provide insights that complement what we watch on screen - and how the numbers define our (unsung) heroes on the global basketball stage. More at


The Mental Health Charter One

Kofi Josephs and Oliver Lawrie join the MVP Cast to discuss their new Mental Health Charter for Basketball.----more---- Kofi tells Mark Woods about how his own lived experience left him to set up his 'Why Not I?' organisation to raise awareness of the issues and how talking about it openly has led to other players and basketball staff talking to him about what they are facing. Oli tells us about how the Charter came into being and the crisis that it wants to help address. And we look at the resources and steps forward required to make the sport a safe space for those involved without fear of falling short. Read the charter here.


The Aaron Radin One

New British Basketball League CEO Aaron Radin joins the MVP Cast.----more---- He tells Mark Woods about a strategy to transform the BBL into a "premier content and entertainment organisation" through raising the standards of teams, game night experience, and its broadcast product. He talks us through the learnings from his previous roles, why expansion is unlikely for 2023 and whether the likes of Cheshire and Plymouth will still fit into an upsized BBL in the future. Follow the podcast @mvp_247 or get past episodes at A Communicated production


The Jordan Williams One

Great Britain forward Jordan Williams joins the MVP Cast.----more---- He dishes all on his current posting with Hungarian side Hubner, the local cuisine and attractions, and the art of packing light and quick when a new overseas basketball assignment comes up. He tells Mark Woods of the influence of his mother in taking life choices that saw him head to Belgium at the age of 17 in the pursuit of knowledge and the adjustment from going from London Lions and the BBL to overseas. Plus he reveals his shock parallel sporting talent. More at A Communicated production @itscommunicated


The Denzel Ubiaro One

Newcastle Eagles guard Denzel Ubiaro joins the MVP Cast.----more---- He tells Mark Woods about his big screen stunt role as the double of Thanasis Antetokounmpo in the Disney movie 'Rise' - and the route that took him from random message to filming in Athens inside a few days. We talk about his globetrotting life as a kid to the collapse of his own American dream, bouncing back from injury to make it in the BBL, and why a players-only meeting can put the Eagles on the road to recovery. More at A Communicated production. @itscommunicated


The Georgia Gayle One

Sheffield Hatters and Great Britain guard Georgia Gayle joins the MVP Cast.----more---- She tells Mark Woods about the passing off the torch to a new generation of homespun heroines and we discuss GB's recent EuroBasket Women qualifiers. We explore her family tree at the Hatters from her late grandmother Betty to her parents and aunt, to her cousin now making his own waves - and the challenges confronting such WBBL clubs. She reveals the growing-up that was needed when she went to America and then career path that might take her back. More at - follow @mvp_247 or search 'The MVP Cast'.


The Patrick Whelan One

Leicester Riders and Great Britain guard Patrick Whelan joins the MVP Cast.----more---- He tells Mark Woods about the brotherly battles that have driven him to succeed, the tragedy that shaped his approach to life and the secret basketball accomplishment within his own family. He details the learning curve that transported him from Warrington to Spain via the USA and the tough roads followed that took to become a part of GB's rebuild - and the type of head coach the national team needs next. More at - Follow the podcast @mvp_247


The Rodney Glasgow Jr. One

Sheffield Sharks guard Rodney Glasgow Jr joins the MVP Cast.----more---- He tells Mark Woods about his upbringing as a child of two distinct American cities, the choices he made, and the influences that brought to bear. We discuss society on both sides of the Atlantic and its attitude to racism, the military discipline that helped him shine on the court, his push to be more self-aware, and his new responsibility as captain of the Sheffield Sharks in their quest for British Basketball League success. More at


The Michael Ochereobia One

Cheshire Phoenix centre Mike Ochereobia joins the MVP Cast.----more---- He tells Mark Woods about his late start in basketball that followed a teenage stint in the boxing ring that knocked him into shape. He reveals his creative side and the release it gives him away from the court, and the secret passion from his youth. More at Sponsored by


The Ed Udyanskyy One

EuroLeague and BBL referee Ed Udyanskyy joins the MVP Cast.----more---- He tells Mark Woods about the 36-hour bus journey that took him from Kiev to London and diverted him on a path towards refereeing - and his progression to become our top export into the officiating ranks. And he shares the trials and tribulations of watching a war unfold in his native Ukraine and the personal heartache it has brought.


The Harlem Globetrotters One

Harlem Globetrotters legend Sweet Lou Dunbar joins the MVP Cast.----more---- He tells Mark Woods about the impact that the team has made globally on the sport and the importance it has had for African-American basketballers in particular. We chat on the DNA of the Globetrotter that mashes entertainment and hoops and he reels off his perfect five recruits from the pool of NBA legends. More info on their UK tour is available at


The Martin Ford One

Martin Ford joins the MVP Cast.----more---- He tells Mark Woods about the life of being a leading FIBA Commissioner and his summer ride to the EuroBasket final. We learn about his journey from being Nick Nurse's minibus driver and an England international to overseeing officiating in the British Basketball League and how the bar can now be raised for refereeing at home and abroad.