After spending his rookie year with the Grizzlies, free agent forward Yves Pons is headed to Europe for the 2022/23 season. Pons has signed a two-year deal with ASVEL Villeurbanne, the French team announced today in a press release (hat tip to Eurohoops).
Pons was born in Haiti and grew up in France, so while this will be his first professional season spent overseas, it won’t be an entirely new experience for him. He played in France’s amateur third-tier division before moving to the U.S., where he played his college ball at Tennessee.
Undrafted in 2021, Pons caught on quickly with the Grizzlies as a free agent and signed a two-way contract with the team last offseason. The 23-year-old only played 71 total minutes in 12 games at the NBA level, but saw a little more action at the G League level, starting 14 of the 15 contests he played for the Memphis Hustle.
Pons averaged 10.1 PPG and 6.2 RPG for the Grizzlies’ NBAGL affiliate, making 47.6% of his shots from the floor, including 33.3% of his threes. When his two-way deal with Memphis expired at season’s end, the club didn’t issue him a qualifying offer, so he became an unrestricted free agent.
Pons’ new team, which competes in France’s top league and the EuroLeague, is owned by former NBA star Tony Parker. ASVEL also recently signed former NBA guard Nando De Colo.