Throughout his career, Nick Kyrgios has had a sometimes-fraught relationship with the world's media—experiences that have shaped the way that he's approached his foray into tennis commentary and media work while sidelined with injury over the last year. But in Episode 2 of his video-podcast series, Good Trouble with Nick Kyrgios, the Aussie finds more than enough common ground with sports broadcaster, writer and host, Jemele Hill.

Kyrgios' guests on his new video-podcast series, which premiered last month, have all been game-changers in their repsective fields, and Hill is no different. The Michigan State University alumna is one of the most recognizable media personalities in sports media, thanks in part to a 15-year career at ESPN, and has been honored with an Emmy Award and the by the National Association of Black Journalists in her career.

But as a member of two minority groups in the industry as a woman of color, Hill has also had to shoulder her share of burdens, and has been outspoken in the face of injustice when she's seen it. In nearly 30 minutes on the couch with Kyrgios, Hill details a challenging ubringing as a daughter raised by a single mother who saw both of her parents struggle with drug addiction; her unexpected evolution from a print journalist to a broadcaster; and how she's found her voice as a political activist and advocate.

"We're all familiar with the phrase, 'The pen is mightier than the sword,'" Kyrgios says at the top of the show. "In the case of today's guest, Jemele Hill, the phrase has literally come to life."


One of the topics that Hill and Kyrgios bond over is the importance of representation in media, and how it shapes the narratives surrounding athletes of color.

At a point in her career, Hill was the only Black, female sports columnist at a daily newspaper in North America—a statistic that she dubbed "embarrassing."

"It was a disheartening label to carry," she said. "Why do I need to be the only one representing people who look like me? It unfortunately reiterated just how many strides, and just how much progress, still needed to be made in the profession.

"Representation matters so much in media. You can tell me this, as someome of color, when you look out at a press conference, and no one in that room looks like you, you're like, 'What is going on here?' If we're going to be covering the stories, the lives, creating the narratives of athletes of color, they should be represented in the people doing that.

"There are a lot of people who can't understand your perspective, or who don't know what it's like to carry that responsibility of being an athlete of color who has a lot of expectations and responsibilities. Even how they write and talk about you is different."

Jemele Hill

Jemele Hill


Kyrgios agreed, estimating that less than 5% of the media members he's faced in press conferences over the course of his career have been people of color, and that he's often needed to clarify or defend himself over how his words are presented in the media.

"It's just isolating, more than anything," Hill continued. "I couldn't wave a banner behind being the only one, I don't want to be the only one. I know it should be a lot more of us."

But Hill's media reach, and impact, has expanded beyond her sports origins. For example, she launched her podcast, "Jemele Hill is Unbothered," in 2019 after leaving ESPN, which covers the intersection of race, gender, politics, and encourages Americans to engage politically with grassroots organizations that are meaningful to them.

All this is done, she says, because she has an internal desire to better the landscape for future generations.

"Whenever I make the decision to speak on something, I don't think about how it can amplify me or what it can do for me, I think about the person who is voiceless. I think about the person who can't speak to what I'm speaking to, who can't say what I can say," she said.

"I know the power of the message, and I'm hoping that someone will see me do it, and decide to also pick up the baton."

Good Trouble with Nick Kyrgiosairs on select Wednesdays at 7 p.m. ET on T2 (available on Amazon Freevee, Fubo, Hulu, Roku and Samsung TV Plus).