Among the many high-level transactions made by FC Barcelona in this off-season – i hear they signed a hot young point guard… – is the well-traveled Terence Morris.
In a career that has seen the former Maryland Terrapin boomerang from the United States to Europe to the Middle East in eight seasons of play, Morris has come into his own in his last two seasons, his first in the Euroleague. In 2007-08, Morris was a key part in a retooled Maccabi Tel Aviv team which played in the Israeli State Cup, Israeli League and Euroleague finals; that season, Morris was named Euroleague Defensive Player of the Year and got a Euroleague First-Team All-Star nod.
Joining CSKA Moscow in 2008-09, Morris again helped lead his team to the Euroleague finals in averaging 6.7 points, 4.9 rebounds and one block per Euroleague game.
As Morris trains with Barcelona in the preseason, he took ten minutes to talk to BallinEurope.com about his career, traveling, and that one guy on his new team.
You’ve played and lived in some fantastic places – Florida, Greece, Israel, Moscow, and now Barcelona. What’s been your favorite so far?
“I would say Texas, because that’s home for me but if I had to choose from that list, I would say Florida. I haven’t seen enough of Barcelona yet.”
Did you ever imagine that basketball would be an outlet to travel not just within the USA, but around the world?
“A lot of my friends tell me that a lot, but I’m not a big traveler myself so it’s not the same for me like most people.”
What do you miss most about the ‘States when you’re living/playing in some European city?
“Everything. Just life there: my family, my friends, my dog, hanging out, sleeping in my own bed.”
As a forward, what’s the biggest difference between the American and European game?
“None, really, though it’s more like the college game than the NBA.”
Have you played with Ricky Rubio yet? Have you met him? Your opinion on his abilities…?
“I don’t know anything about him besides he’s a good passer.”
What do you hope to bring to FC Barcelona and how far can this team go?
“Championships and lots of winning.”
What has been the highlight of your career for you thus far?
“Making it to the Final Four two straight years for my first two years in Euroleague.”
How much longer would you like to play and how much longer do you expect to play pro ball?
“I’ve thought about that since I hit 30. Basically, I wanna win at least one Euroleague title before I stop. I don’t have my own family yet, so I wanna work on that soon.”
Because of Brandon Jennings, Jeremy Tyler, and even lesser-known guys like Brandon Brown, there’s a lot of talk about young American players testing the professional waters in Europe before attempting to break into the NBA or attend university. Do you think there will be an increase in this trend?
“Maybe. I think it depends on the success of players and how they turn out before other players try it.”
What advice would you give an American player thinking about playing in Europe? Would you recommend it?
“It all depends on what they want out of their ball career.”