Ovie Soko

London Lions have emerged as clear favourites to sign Great Britain forward Ovie Soko.

Despite interest from Capital rivals, the London City Royals, MVP can exclusively reveal that the Copper Box is the preferred destination for the 28-year-old who spent last season with ACB side Murcia.

Soko’s contractual arrangements with ITV following his appearance on reality show Love Island have effectively precluded him from a return to Spain.

However with a string of lucrative TV and personal appearances in the works, and a reported £900,000 endorsement deal agreed with clothing retailer ASOS, a move to the British Basketball League offers an opportunity to capitalise fully on his new-found fame while also fulfilling his desire to keep playing.

“I will be playing in the UK next year,” he told Sky Sports News. “I’m just ironing some stuff out. And I’m excited.”

The Lions will begin their pre-season this weekend with games against Cal Poly University and Bakken Bears although Soko would still need to obtain international clearance from Spain to finalise a return to this country.

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The reigning champions have already re-signed last season’s MVP Justin Robinson and captain Joe Ikhinwin but Paul Guede, Jerelle Okoro, Kervin Bristol and Ladarius Tabb will not return.

However Soko’s presence, at a much lower salary that the £100,000 per year he was picking up in the ACB, could be transformative for the club with his vast social media following and public profile.

Photo: Ahmedphotos

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