Born on June 23, 1975, Michael Lamont James is a former professional American basketball player. In his college years, James played as the point guard from 1994 to 1998 for Duquesne Dukes, which plays in the Atlantic 10 Conference. Michael won the 2004 NBA Championship with the Detroit Pistons.
Michael started his professional career in Europe, being an integral part of the French and Austrian teams. Playing for the UBC St. Pölten, James won the Austrian Championship in 1999. He was also honored as the Austrian League All-Star in the same season. Then, he went on to play for the French team Stade Lorrain Université Club Nancy Basket, also known as the SLUC Nancy Basket, in the 2000-01 season of the LNB Pro A league.
To start his career in the NBA, he signed with the Miami Heats as a free agent in the 2001-02 season. After that, in his more than a decade-long professional career, Michael James played as a point guard for the Detroit Pistons, Houston Rockets, Minnesota Timberwolves, Washington Wizards, Dallas Mavericks, Boston Celtics, Milwaukee Bucks, Toronto Raptors, New Orleans Hornets, and the Chicago Bulls. James maintained an average of 10.0 points per game throughout his career.
Thanks to their aggressive yet effective defense strategies, Michael James and Lindsey Hunter were fondly referred to as the “Pitbulls.” Their aggressive defense was one of the reasons behind the Detroit Pistons winning the 2004 NBA Championship.
In the 2005-06 NBA season, James started for the Toronto Raptors and averaged 20.3 points per game, 3.3 rebounds per game, and 5.8 assists per game, and had 44.2% shot accuracy from the 3-pointer range. In April 2006, he became the first Raptor to score more than 30 points in four consecutive games.
After having several successful NBA seasons, Michael James signed with Aliağa Petkim to play in the Turkish Basketball League in the 2011 season. But then he returned home and played for the NBA G-League teams Erie BayHawks and Texas Legends.
If James’ professional journey has taught anything, it’s how to overcome challenges and keep going.
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