Tell us a little bit about yourself - for example, growing up what were your interests? Have they changed or did you always have a main concept/idea in your mind that you wanted to achieve?
From as early as I can remember, I have always wanted to put on a show! I think I saw Eddie Murphy’s first stand up and said, that’s it show business for me. I’ve been the class clown ever since.
What’s your day to day like when there is anything basketball-related going on?
I usually meditate and do research until it’s showtime!
What first sparked your interest in the game of basketball? And eventually transitioning over to the broadcast/producing side of things?
My cousin introduced me to the game and there was a huge community of guys he knew that played throughout the city tournaments. I looked up to them and aspired to be like them. When I moved to Toronto from Trinidad (there was some culture shock) there weren’t many visible representations of black males around, and not having my dad present, I looked up to the players as examples.
When you have some time to unwind, where can we usually find Akil hanging in the city?
My couch; meditating.
What adversities have you faced throughout your journey to where you are today?
All of them from legal to mental to spiritual. I’ll save most of the details for my book.
Did you ever have moments where you felt like maybe you were on the wrong path?
Never the wrong path, sometimes I’ve felt like I wasn’t moving at the speed I wanted to be living at. But I’ve been in the right path most of my adulthood.
What would you say is the greatest change you’ve made that’s impacted your life?
Dealing with being the producer/creator/host of the hangout, what are some ways you find to deal with the stress that can build-up when filming a show?
After filming I need one to come down. I ramp myself up a lot to have high energy for the shows and it takes a while to come down. So it’s hard to be around people when you're shifting gears. That can be stressful for me personally.
How do you find ways to keep up with your personal life when there’s a lot going on?
What’s it like seeing the growth of Canadian basketball in all its entirety today?
Funny. For some of us we saw it happening and tried to tell people. So it’s humorous how impressed people are now to me.
What advice would you give to young people around Canada that really want to jump into the broadcasting/producing world of sports?
Start your own shit!
What has been the most memorable moment in your journey to date?
Interviewing Kawhi on the team bus during the parade. Honourable mention to hosting Jurrasic Park!
When you’re hosting Jurassic park how much of the energy is you vs. the energy you get back from the fans?
What would you say your personal style is?
90's hoodman in tight pants.
If you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be?
Toronto… or Hawaii.
What does Home is Toronto mean to you? How has this city helped shape who you are today?
I have a pretty odd collection of interests and passions and I owe that to the fact that Toronto has exposed me to a lot, and has allowed me to pursue those interests. It’s a great environment to grow in.
What about the city inspires you the most?
Where we’re going.
Where is your favourite place to be in Toronto when you have the day to yourself?