Starting five: A conversation with Roy Booker

Roy Booker
Sarah Morris ~ Special to B Magazine

Roy Booker, program director of SEMO Preparatory School, started his basketball career in Portageville, Missouri, but by the time he finished his career, his skills had taken him around the world.

He recently reflected on his overseas career.

B Magazine: Where all did you play?

Roy Booker: Turkey, Israel, Germany, Austria, Holland, Hungary, Slovakia, Romania, Cyprus, Syria, Brazil, Argentina, China, Chile, Mexico, Australia, France and the Dominican Republic.

BM: What was your Were not in Kansas anymore, Toto, moment?

RB: My first year in Turkey when I played my first professional game against a EuroLeague team by the name of Fenerbahce. I was at the free-throw line, and I saw about 10 security men all line up along the baseline with face shields and holding machine guns. A bit different from America college games!

BM: What was the most enjoyable part of those years?

RB: Meeting new people, learning different languages, food and travel to new places and being in different environments. I think this has molded me the most into the man Ive become today. Im very blessed and grateful for God blessing me with a gift that allowed me to play professionally to experience so much.

BM: In all of your years playing, what one game stands out the most?

RB: In Austria, I think back in 2010-2011, I had 50 points in a game and went 12-13 from three pointers with 12 assists and zero turnovers, and we won the game against the former champions of the league.

BM: What was your least favorite part of playing overseas?

RB: My least favorite thing about overseas was the TV not being in English in most places in Europe because I love to watch movies. Also some years, my coaches didnt speak English so I would have a translator to tell me what he would be saying. Sometimes I would have teammates who spoke a little English, so that would help also.