April 24, 2023

Basketball Jones ft. Morgan Cato and Tyrel Kirkham

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By Pen Moodz

To have what you have not, you must do what you have not done.

For the team and I, that meant flying out to Las Vegas to invest in something that we are all incredibly passionate about – story and basketball. Before each blog post, I re-watch the corresponding League Biz episode in its entirety to reminisce on the emotions felt on the day. Currently, the emotions that are soaring to the surface of my pores and racing across the neural pathways of my brain are that of pride and joy. I am proud because of the quality of work our team created. I am joyful because I am watching the best in the business walk in their purpose and delightfully share the beauty behind their journey.

When you listen to Morgan Cato, the Assistant GM and VP of Basketball Operations for the Phoenix Suns, speak to her love for the game, you see and hear the nine-year-old within her emerge. Little Morgan is dancing because she’s witnessing her dreams materialize before her eyes. From watching her cousin get recruited to the prolific Georgetown Hoyas under the magnanimous John Thompson, she knew that she too would find her way to the hardwood. While her journey to the Biz took 10/12 years to unravel, she persevered through rejections and contemplated alternative careers as a sports attorney to keep her in proximity with the game of hoop. However, the lesson she learned early on was to put the timetable on attaining her dreams aside, and to simply follow the work.

You did that, Morgan.

There’s something about New York City and their ability produce guards of the highest ilk, because Cato’s backcourt running-mate for this episode was her fellow New York Native, Tyrel Kirkham. Echoing Tyrel’s on screen inspiration, the moment this brother walked onto the set, it was clear that he was definitely “cooler than the other side of the pillow” à la Stewart Scott. His foray into the world of sport took him down a winding road, growing along the way, until he ultimately landed as the VP of Brand and Marketing Strategy for the Detroit Pistons. Like many in NYC, his passion for the game stemmed from watching his uncles and cousins play with such hustle and vigor in the local Brentwood parks. The essence of teamwork and preparation stood out, so he translated that understanding into his passion of becoming the best brand builder.

Together, Morgan and Tyrel exude one defining trait – unwavering confidence. Both knew that they were destined for greatness. Mindful of their objective, they mapped a path and surrounded themselves with a village of support, with each member of their circle pursuing their goals for life relentlessly. This episode has become a new favourite of mine, because it reminds me of the importance to never let my flame of ambition burn out. It reminds me how fortunate I am to architect the Tidal League rocket-ship alongside the most talented group. Your journey is only as fulfilling as the team that supports you on the way. We hope this episode serves as another level of support as you climb higher on the rung to achieving your dreams of working in the Biz.

Peace and Love,