Toney The Tiger is a term that has, no doubt, already been coined by a teammate as soon as our number 24 signed for the team. However, nobody encapsulates what it means to be a predator, more than our 6’8” power forward (and it’s not just because of his ironic surname).
Cutting his teeth on the concrete courts of Brooklyn, Tafari’s been raised as a ball player the toughest way possible. There was only one place in Britain where he could take that New York attitude and fit in – Liverpool. It’s just a shame he had to go via Newcastle and Sheffield first.
Earning his stripes by winning the BBL Championship with the Newcastle Eagles, was the first glimpse of his talent the UK witnessed. But it was his season with the Sharks, when he inspired them to Cup glory in 2010, which made us all stop and think – there’s a beast inside this man and it’s caged within the all-too-English comforts of Sheffield. He needs to be unleashed. Untamed. Unstoppable.
Ever since signing, Tafari has preyed on every team in the BBL helping his team to the top of the table and his harrowing court presence, is a real characteristic of the club’s winning ways this year.
Tonight’s semi-final is against one of Tafari’s former clubs. He will be the first to tell you, it’s not the Echo Arena that’s winning games, it is the team. Still, last time the Eagles visited the stadium, Toney and the rest of the hide mauled them by 22 points, leaving nothing but feathers on the court. So, Newcastle… Welcome back to the Jungle.