Esh Group Eagles Newcastle are pleased to announce that returning for his 12th consecutive season on Tyneside is 6′ 7” power forward Darius Defoe.

Defoe who has been involved in every one of Newcastle’s twenty-two National titles in the last ten years will once again be one of the foundations of The Eagles drive for glory next season.

The Londoner who is very much an adopted Geordie has played over 360 BBL games for Newcastle and as well as being the Club’s third highest points scorer is also the all-time leader in rebounds for the Tyneside franchise.

Defoe who turns 31 during the season has gone from being a promising youngster on the bench to a reliable and consistent starter in The Eagles llne-up and along with Fab Flournoy and Charles Smith is one of the cornerstones of Flournoy’s defensive system.

“We probably ask Darius to do more for our team than he would if he went elsewhere,” commented Flournoy.

“He’s a vital ingredient in our mix and does it consistently and regularly for us at both ends of the floor. I genuinely believe there’s not a better British forward in The BBL as Darius in the role that he plays and he was always someone that I wanted back on my roster.”

“I’m delighted to welcome him back and to have him alongside me once again. Darius is exactly what Newcastle Eagles is all about and to be able to confirm him as part of our roster for next season is a real boost for everyone at The Club.”

Defoe obviously adds vast experience to Newcastle as well as knowing the system and set-up inside out following his long and successful association with the organisation. He also is delighted to be back.

“I was very proud of what we achieved as a team last season and with the part I played in helping my team-mates and the Club be successful. I guess I’m entering the veteran stage now so I feel that I need to help them again next season to try and repeat what we did.”

“I love Newcastle, the Club, the City and the people. In truth I didn’t want to be anywhere else. I owe Fab so much for the career I’ve had and it’s always great to play alongside him. You never stop learning and he never stops demanding but that helps motivate me and I’m looking forward to next season already.”

Eagles recruitment for next season is beginning to take shape and gather place and all indications are that they aren’t looking to give up that top spot without a fight next campaign.

The club now look forward to pre-season games against stiff European competition in the form of Swedish champions Sodertalje and Port of Antwerp Giants from Belgium. Games take place on the 7th/8th/9th September at Northumbria University Sport Central and tickets can be purchased by calling the club on 0191 245 3880 or via Eagles website at