An Open Letter to Carl English

By Audley Stephenson (Deputy Commissioner, NBL Canada)

On February 23, 2020, the National Basketball League of Canada and the St. John's Edge organization will celebrate the storied career of Canadian basketball icon, Carl English who will see his jersey retired as part of a special halftime banner raising ceremony.

The significance of Carl English's career can't be overstated and his personal story of triumph over tragedy will serve as an inspiration to many regardless if you're an aspiring young player with an NBA dream or not. In 2017-2018, the St. John's Edge began play in the National Basketball League of Canada which provided an opportunity for Carl to return to his home province of Newfoundland and Labrador to play professional basketball.

English, who had a successful international playing career which spanned over 16 years and included many years as a member of the Canadian national team had an immediate impact on the Edge organization. I remember being on hand for his very first game at Mile One Centre on December 1st, 2017 and vividly recall the eruption of the home town crowd when his name was announced during the starting lineup.

He would go on to lead the league in scoring that year and be named the league MVP marking the first time a Canadian player would receive the honours. Many of us still remember his historic 58 point explosion on March 3, 2018 at Mile One Centre when Carl simply went off and eclipsed a long time league record for most points scored in a game.

Throughout his time in NBL Canada, Carl continually served as a pillar in the community and provided a real-life example to young kids who aspire to dream the same way he did.

Carl has served as a shining example of what it means to dream, work hard for what you want and push yourself to get it. He challenges himself first and encourages those around him to do the same.

I'm personally appreciative to you Carl for all you've done on and off the court and look forward to being on hand to celebrate your career with you at Mile One Centre.

Wishing you and your family continued happiness and good health.

"Never doubt yourself, never stop chasing your dreams, and always believe the impossible." - Carl English