Sonny Weems signed with CSKA

(photo M. Serbin,
Forward Sonny Weems (26 y.o., 198 cm) joined our team. The contract with the American player is signed for three years.

Clarence Sonny Weems graduated from the Arkansas University where he transferred from junior Arkansas Fort Smith college. His student team in 2008 won the first March Madness game in 9 years. Upon his graduation Sonny got drafted 39th by the Chicago Bulls but the pick was immediately traded to the Denver Nuggets. Weems played several games for the Nuggets in 2008-09 season taking part also in D-league action. He was traded twice in the offseason finding himself in the Toronto Raptors. The Raptors gave the chance to the forward and Sonny has become one of regular rotation player starting 28 of 59 games in 2009-10 season, averaging 9.2 points, 2.6 rebounds and 1.8 assists in 23.9 minutes. The forward played 140 NBA career games averaging 7.7 points, 2.5 rebounds and 1.5 assists in 20.3 minutes.

Weems decided to move to Europe when the lockout delayed the start of the 2011-12 season and signed 1-year contract with Zalgiris. His averages: in Euroleague 15 games, 29.9 minutes, 15.5 points (51.4% two-pointers, 36.0% three-pointers, 68.6% free throws), 5.0 rebounds, 1.3 assists, 0.9 steals, 0.2 blocked shots; in LKL 13 games, 23.6 minutes, 9.9 points (50.7% two-pointers, 34.3% three-pointers, 69.4% free throws), 3.8 rebounds, 1.8 assists, 1.4 steals, 0.2 blocked shots; in VTB United League 16 games, 25.5 minutes, 10.3 points (52.6% two-pointers, 34.2% three-pointers, 73.5% free throws), 4.1 rebounds, 2.0 assists, 0.8 steals, 0.4 blocked shots.

Andrey Vatutin, CSKA President:
The small forward position was the most weakened with Kirilenko and Siskauskas gone. I think that the addition of Weems is the best possible way to cover the weakness. Sonny is one of the best small forwards who play in Europe last season. He is athletic, he has excellent shot from the outside. Besides, as our friends from Zalgiris and the Toronto Raptors say, Weems is very gracious, friendly and, most importantly, passionate, open to the perception, understanding the subtleties of European basketball tournaments and rules in the Old World. I would like to mention also that this offseason CSKA selection campaign is finished.

Ettore Messina, CSKA head coach:
I think Sonny Weems proved by his play for Zalgiris that he is the player of highest level with the mind open towards European basketball. With his abilities and excellent personality he can become one of our teams leaders for the next seasons to come. I am sure that he will be a great addition to our team.