Arrived in France for the first time in 2015, american forward Paul Carter (29 years old) had a great season with Sharks Antibes. After playing in Germany and Australia during this current 2016/2017 season, he recently signed a contract with Hyères-Toulon Var Basket, an organization localized in south of France and not really so far from his former french team. We met him to talk about his career!
3PTSHOT: Can you introduce yourself?
Paul Carter: Hello, my name is Paul Carter..!
3PTSHOT: How did you started playing basketball?
Paul Carter: I started playing organized basketball when I was 10 years old. My mother signed me up at the local YMCA.
3PTSHOT: Your father played into the NBA. As a child, did you saw him play in the league? Did he was your model? Did he gave you a lot of advices during your career?
Paul Carter: Yes my father played for the Lakers, but it was before I was born so I never got to see him professionally. He loves to give me advice any chance he gets. I actually grew up with my mother as my role model, she worked extremely hard to take care of me and make sure I got the basketball training I needed to be successful.
3PTSHOT: You started your pro basketball career in 2010 in Chyprus. Did that was the first time you went abroad?
Paul Carter: No I’ve traveled abroad before that, my first time playing abroad was in China with a program called (Sports Reach) its a Christian sports organization that travels and shares the gospel of Jesus Christ through sports.
3PTSHOT: Quickly, you returned to the United States trying to get a spot in a NBA roster. You finally played into the D-League during two years for three different teams. Did you were expecting to start a pro career like this? Did the fact to not having signed a guaranteed contract with a NBA team was it a big disappointment?
Paul Carter: It was personally disappointing but I understood that God has a reason and a plan for everything!
3PTSHOT: During those first two years, you have also played a few games in Mexico, Israel and the Dominican Republic. What did you learned from these shorts experiences?
Paul Carter: I learned about the professional side of basketball rather quickly, but I also met great people and went through experiences that made me grow as a man.
3PTSHOT: Then, you really launched your career in Europe in less exposed championships, such as the second Israeli division then Finland, where you were the best rebounder and second best scorer of the competition. What can you say about that? Did you realized that you could achieve a great overseas career?
Paul Carter: I had faith and I knew I could achieve my goals if given a chance. I was blessed to have coaches and management in Finland that believed in my ability and trusted the way I play the game.
3PTSHOT: As a result, your ascent was quick and good teams of major European championships began to take an interest in you, like Antibes in France last season or Alba Berlin in Germany this season. Did you enjoyed that process?
Paul Carter: The process was good, I learned a lot more about pro basketball in Europe and also myself.
3PTSHOT: France and Germany are two neighboring countries. But, is the German championship different from the French championship?
Paul Carter: Yes they are pretty different, in my opinion France is one of the strongest if not the strongest league in Europe the talent and skill of The French players is the best I’ve competed against in Europe!
3PTSHOT: This year, you also played in NBL for the New Zealand Breakers. Did the presence on the team of your former teammate Akil Mitchell was one of the reasons for your signature there?
Paul Carter: Yes that was a big reason, Akil and I are good friends he’s like a little brother to me and I was extremely blessed to be able to play with him again and play for such a great organization in the New Zealand breakers.
3PTSHOT: Knowing that the season is shorter in NBL than in Europe, what is the interest for a basketball player to play in this championship?
Paul Carter: The NBL is a great league! The talent is strong the teams are strong, and even though the season is shorter the basketball is at a very high level!
3PTSHOT: Apart from a shorter season, what are the peculiarities of the Australian championship?
Paul Carter: The NBL has a great schedule and their media coverage is only 2nd to the NBA in my opinion. The local and import players are extremely talented! The Australian league has the potential to grow into one of the best leagues in the world!
3PTSHOT: Currently, you are back in the South of France with another team, Hyères-Toulon. Do you appreciate life and weather there?
Paul Carter: Lol of course! I love the weather in the south of France! It’s beautiful! The life here is very easy going and I like that a lot.
3PTSHOT: Did other teams tried to hire you until the end of the season?
Paul Carter: I talked to a few teams but I honestly wanted to rest, playing for Alba Berlin and the New Zealand Breakers I was pretty exhausted, but I couldn’t turn down a chance to come back and play in France!
3PTSHOT: To conclure, what are your expectations for the future?
Paul Carter: My expectations for the future are to remain healthy, to continue to enjoy playing the game of basketball, and wherever I go meet great people and build relationships for a life time…