There are over a dozen Canadians playing in the NBA this season — names you might recognize like Tristian Thompson, Andrew Wiggins, and Jamal Murray — but this only tells a small part of the complex story that is Canadian basketball.
“Toronto players have their own identity,” said Ro Russell, Coach at Grassroots Elite, in the latest VICE Sports documentary. “They have a combination of the Euro game and an Americanized game.” That identity began with Jamaal Magloire, a once-clumsy high school kid turned college basketball champion at Kentucky in 1998. Before long, Magloire was covering his eyes when dunking on some of the NBA’s best as a Hornet and Buck.
“He was one of the pioneers in Toronto-based player that had great success at every level,” continued Ro Russell. “From there, people started to follow that path.” Magloire, the son of Trinidadian immigrants, paved the way for so many kids after him, and now, he is making sure that there is a pipeline to the NBA for Canada’s most talented young hoopers.
“To come out of this city [Toronto] with the challenges and obstacles that we had I do see myself as a trail blazer,” Magloire told VICE Sports. “Only because of where this whole had started. There’s a lot of good players here — to their credit, they have really took this thing by the horns and took it to another level.”
Now, VICE Sports is interested in the next generation of Toronto hoopers. Thus, the latest documentary focuses on Canadian star Jamal Murray, a young talent that has made waves in the NBA. Check out the film below and share your thoughts in the comments.