- National Teams
Joel Freeland has now officially signed a 2-year deal with CSKA Moscow, the Russian club announced today.
The GB forward became an unrestricted free agent after his contract with Portland Trail Blazers expired and is now making a return to Europe.
Reports suggested that Freeland had an offer to remain in the NBA with Real GM’s Shams Charania claiming that the 28-year-old turned down a 3-year offer from Dallas Mavericks in favour of sticking to his initial agreement of a move to the Russian captial.
“I am really excited and happy to come back to Europe and to sign for such unbelievable team like CSKA Moscow,” said Freeland. “It is a privilege to be a part of this great organization and I will definitely not take it lightly, I am going to work hard to help my team reach its goals.
“I know how hard CSKA worked to obtain me and that makes me even more emotional, it showed me that the club really wanted me to be there. I am sure that we have great season ahead of us.”
Freeland played in the Euroleague with Unicaja Malaga from 2009-12 – averaging 12.2 points in 43 games – and will take on his former team in Group D of the 2015-16 competition.
CSKA’s Head Coach revealed that the plan is to utilise Freeland in the 5 spot in their starting line-up.
“Joel is coming to Moscow after we talked several times by phone,” said Dimitris Itoudis. “I explained him that our idea is that he replaces Sasha Kaun on our roster.
“Freeland already has Euroleague experience of playing for Unicaja Malaga where he had good numbers, he spent three years in the NBA. He played mostly at power forward position but he feels comfortable playing center and this is where we plan to use him primarily.
“He has size, knowledge, athleticism to cover both spots. I am pretty sure that he is able to accomplish the goals we set for him. Joel is excited to join us, ready to work hard and fulfill his duties. I think he is a good addition to our team.”
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