By John Askounis/ email@example.com
AS Monaco inked Norris Cole to a deal for the remainder of the 2019-20 season, the French team announced on Monday.
“I am excited to be here. We discussed it with my family and my agent, decided it was my best option” mentioned the 31-year-old American point guard upon signing his contract, “I’m looking forward to get familiar with my new teammates, talking to the staff and helping my team achieve the best possible.”
The Cleveland State alum competed in 43 EuroLeague the past couple of seasons between Maccabi FOX Tel Aviv and Buducnost VOLI. Previously played in 428 NBA games with the Miami Heat, New Orleans Pelicans and Oklahoma City Thunder capturing a pair of championships with the Heat in 2012 and 2013.
“The NBA was a great experience. I played in great venues with great teammates and great mentors. Playing alongside LeBron James? Of course it was cool, very cool” he took out on his NBA tenure, “When you play with one of the best players ever, you try to make the most out of it. LeBron is a good guy, a good teammate. We won a lot of games with him. We formed a nice team. I will forever remember the titles of 2012 and 2013.”
“Probably the strongest team I have ever played against” he replied to a question on the 2013 and 2014 Finals opposite to the San Antonio Spurs, “I was a young player in the league, it was exciting to defend an international star like Tony Parker, a legend in France. I used to watch his matches on TV back in college.”
Cole moved overseas in 2017 signing a one-year contract with Maccabi FOX Tel Aviv. He started the 2018-19 season with Italian outlet Sidigas Avellino, joined Buducnost VOLI midway through his campaign. Up next is the 7DAYS EuroCup and France’s Jeep Elite Pro A.
“It was very different at first, but I like differences” he said on adjusting to the European basketball style, “I don’t think everything should be the same. Different ways to play, different tactics, different rules too. Of course I enjoyed the NBA, but I also appreciate being able to play in Europe.”
The player from Dayton, Ohio, has been a free agent since the beginning of the 2019-20 season, but trained back in USA. “I am ready to play. I can’t wait to meet my teammates and the staff. I am very happy to start this new adventure with AS Monaco” he said.
Monaco is 3-3 in EuroCup’s Group A in pace for a Top 16 spot. The French team also carries a 6-2 W-L tally in its domestic league.