We spoke with Sanders -- who's played in 6 NBA seasons -- and asked if Cole's got a realistic chance ... and his answer may surprise you.
"I do, for real. I've seen him hoop before in some games and I knew he took the game seriously when he was younger."
"He always raps about it, so that's dope. I'm excited to see that."
Sanders knows exactly what the process will be like, but in reverse -- the 31-year-old has made waves in the music industry off the court ... and even produced a song for PARTYNEXTDOOR.
"It's gonna be just like the music game. Me doing music, everybody laughed at me, everybody went at my head and challenged me ... and I had to go prove myself."
Sanders -- who recently told us he's working on making it back to the league as well -- says he loves the idea of joining forces with Cole on a team next year ... which could end up in some music collabs!!