AS Monaco added firepower to its lineup by signing former Ford Trophy winner Mike James, the club announced Friday. James (1.85 meters, 31 years old) arrives after being released from CSKA Moscow, where the guard had spent the past two seasons. In 2020-21, James poured in 19.3 points per game to go along with 5.7 assists for an index rating of 19.7 over 27 games. He was the second-best scorer in the EuroLeague last season, led the league in PIR and ranked sixth in assists. James finished the season with Brooklyn of the NBA where he was worth 7.7 points and 4.2 assists in 13 games. He won the Alphonso Ford Trophy in 2018-19 as the EuroLeague’s top scorer with 19.8 ppg with AX Armani Exchange Milan - gaining him a spot on the 2018-19 All-EuroLeague Second Team.
After playing college basketball at Eastern Arizona JC and Lamar, James began his European career with KK Zagreb in Croatia. He also played in Israel, Italy and Greece before making his EuroLeague debut with Baskonia Vitoria-Gasteiz in 2014. He played one season with Panathinaikos Athens before a brief stint in the NBA with Phoenix and New Orleans, after which he returned to Panathinaikos.
“I was really looking for a different and exciting challenge,” James said. “I wanted to start on something new compared to what I have already experienced during my career. It's a real opportunity for me to start a new adventure and to prove what I'm worth as a player in this beautiful place. My goal is to win as many games as possible and to be very competitive in EuroLeague. I am very happy to join Monaco, and I can't wait to do what I love in France, in a great atmosphere. I can't wait to join the guys and discover the team, hoping to do great things for Monegasque basketball. We are outsiders, but I come here to have ambitions and to take the team to the highest possible level."