Moustapha “Mous” Sonko played his last professional basketball game two weeks ago, finishing his career in a loss against Le Havre, a game that was also Sonko’s 200th in the French ProA. One of the first symbols of streetball culture in the French basketball scene retired after having won several titles throughout his professional career. BallinEurope.com takes a look back and a look forward in collaboration with Basketnews.net.
In this week’s edition, the French basketball magazine had a short portrait of Sonko, an athletic guard who was a defensive force over several years and is still very present in the memories of many ACB players. Basketnews spoke to those who coached him on his way: Alain Weisz, who brought him to the highest level in France; and Bozidar Maljkovic, his coach on Team Spain.
French champion in 1998, MVP in 2000, Olympic Silver Medal in 2000, Korac Cup 2001, ACB champion 2005, the list of titles won by the guard is long. And Bozidar Maljkovic, Sonko’s coach for four years in Spain really emphasizes the impact Mous had on his teams.
When he was in good shape physically, you could not win if Mous played against you. You wanted him in your team your whole career, Dejan Bodiroga and Sasha Djordjevic, two of the best offensive players in the history of European basketball, told me that when we spoke about him recently. Imagine what this means!
Maljkovic goes so far as to consider Sonko his own son during the time in Malaga and later on in Madrid.
Mous deserves this compliment. At that time, he was certainly the best defender in Europe. A good offensive player too but in defense he was ex-tra-or-di-na-ry! I have never forgotten one play from the time he played for me in Malaga. We played against Pamesa for a Euroleague spot and Pamesa was up by one point. Mous took the ball in offense and went for a dunk against the whole defense, one on five!
Now that his career is over, Sonko has huge plans about his future which will naturally be in the basketball area”
I will create a basketball school in Senegal. I will live in Paris but I will travel a lot between Paris and Dakar. With some friends, we will also create a basketball players agency. Creating links between Africa, France and Europe will be the goal.
A project that will get the support of his former coaches: Bozidar Maljkovic said that if his son starts playing basketball one day, he would sign Sonko as a player agent immediately. Alain Weisz continues, stating that Mous is a very intelligent person who loves basketball. If he really starts working in that area, he will succeed like he succeeded in basketball.
Thanks, Mous, for all the great action you gave us on the court! We wish you best of luck in the future.