Wildcats' Cotton wants title before NBA return

Star import Bryce Cotton would love to reignite his NBA career, but first he wants to lead the Perth Wildcats to another NBL title.

Cotton was crowned the NBL's MVP earlier this week after producing yet another standout season.

The 25-year-old averaged 19.4 points per game, and shot a league-high 84 three-pointers at 44.9 percent

It followed on from his debut NBL campaign, when he took the league by storm after arriving late in the season.

Cotton had stints with NBA outfits Utah, Phoenix and Memphis earlier in his career, and the American harbours ambitions of returning to the best basketball league in the world.

That move could come as early as next season if all goes to plan.

But Perth will always hold a special place in Cotton's heart after reinvigorating his love of the game, and he wants to help the Wildcats win another title.

"Of course. If the opportunity presents itself (to return to the NBA), I'd be on the first thing there," Cotton said.

"But you can only control what's in front of you.

"Perth did a lot for me, emotionally as well. It helped me bring back my love for the game.

"Sometimes when you play overseas and you're far away from home, it can be tough on you mentally.

"But once I came to Australia, I fell in love with the game all over again.

"Considering this team has had a history of winning championships ... I just want to do my part, because I know I'm playing for something that's bigger than myself."

The Wildcats face an uphill battle to win a third straight NBL title after finishing the regular season in third spot.

They will start as underdogs in their semifinal series against Adelaide, which begins on Saturday.

Cotton starred in last season's playoffs, highlighted by his 45-point haul in game three of the grand final series against Illawarra.

If Cotton fires again, Perth will be hard to stop.

But skipper Damian Martin is arguably just as important to the Wildcats' title hopes.

Martin has battled an ankle injury for most of the season, but he was still good enough to be named the NBL's Best Defensive Player for a record sixth time.

"He's willing to get bloody noses, dislocated fingers. He does everything for us," Cotton said of Martin.

"He's a tremendous leader. I've played for some pretty good leaders before, but he's definitely top of the list. And anything he tells me, I'm all ears."