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#pounditMonday, March 8, 2021

Articles tagged: Nicolas Batum

Clippers have found unique way to throw off their opponents

Serge Ibaka

The LA Clippers were lacking many things last season, and it turns out that international flair was one of them.

Speaking this week with Eurohoops, new Clippers forward Nicolas Batum revealed that he speaks French with fellow new arrival Serge Ibaka to throw off their opponents during games.

“I think it was in Phoenix, we were in a free-throw situation and we were talking in French,” said Batum. “[Suns forward] Jae Crowder looked at us like, ‘It should be illegal to do that.’

“We use that as an advantage sometimes,” Batum continued. “We can say stuff people can’t understand when we’re talking about defense. We’re still doing it for sure.”

Batum, who is of French descent, and Ibaka, who used to live in France as a teen, are both starting for the Clippers this season. The team is tied for the second-best record in the Western Conference right now at 7-4.

There are very few players in the NBA who will be able to understand what Batum and Ibaka are saying. It is especially so in the West where center Rudy Gobert of the Utah Jazz is the only active French player. In any event, the Clippers’ team chemistry seems to be improving from last year, and the added multilingualism can only help their cause.

Clippers’ locker room atmosphere already improving?

Kawhi Leonard

The 2019-20 LA Clippers were a spectacular trainwreck, in large part due to a lack of chemistry between their players. That may already be improving this season however.

New Clippers forward Nicolas Batum spoke positively of the team’s locker room environment on Tuesday. Batum said that the atmosphere has been “crazy” in terms of how fun and light his teammates have been, per ESPN’s Ohm Youngmisuk. He also noted how welcomed he has felt and that all his teammates reached out to him for his birthday earlier this week.

Batum, 32, is a 12-year NBA veteran who has also played for the Portland Trail Blazers and the Charlotte Hornets. He was one of the new additions to the Clippers over the offseason along with Serge Ibaka, Luke Kennard, and others. Montrezl Harrell, JaMychal Green, and Landry Shamet were the primary departures from last year’s team.

The Clippers were previously the subject of a rather explosive report about their chemistry issues last season. While the core of that team is still intact, hopefully a more cohesive culture is beginning to emerge under new head coach Tyronn Lue.

Clippers fans, show everyone who runs Los Angeles with this great “We Run LA” shirt. It makes a perfect gift for you or a friend – you can buy it here:

Clippers sign Nicolas Batum, Reggie Jackson and waive Joakim Noah

Joakim Noah

The Los Angeles Clippers made some moves on Tuesday night as they set their roster ahead of the upcoming season.

The Clippers signed Nicolas Batum, who recently cleared waivers after being let go by the Charlotte Hornets to make room for Gordon Hayward. Batum, 31, averaged 3.6 points and 4.5 rebounds in 22.9 minutes per game last season.

The Clippers are also re-signing Reggie Jackson, who signed with the team in February after being waived by Detroit. Jackson averaged 9.5 points and 3.2 assists in 23.1 minutes per game for the Clippers last season.

The team also waived Joakim Noah, who appeared in five games after being signed late in the season. Noah, who played 13 seasons in the NBA and made two All-Star teams, is expected to retire.

Adding Batum will give the Clippers some versatility and depth, while Jackson allows them to retain someone behind Patrick Beverley.

Clippers fans, show everyone who runs Los Angeles with this great “We Run LA” shirt. It makes a perfect gift for you or a friend – you can buy it here:

Hornets’ Nicolas Batum suffers broken middle finger

Nicolas Batum Hornets

It’s only the first game of the season and Nicolas Batum is already hurt.

Batum left Wednesday night’s Charlotte Hornets opener against the Chicago Bulls with a right hand injury, the team said.

Later, The Athletic’s Shams Charania reported that Batum suffered a broken right middle finger.

Batum had four rebounds and two assists in 11 minutes prior to exiting. The 30-year-old averaged 9.3 points, 5.2 rebounds and 3.3 assists in 31.4 minutes per game last season.

Rudy Gobert, Clint Capela trade shots on Twitter

Rudy Gobert pink suit

A pair of Western Conference rivals are keeping the drama going even in the dog days of the offseason.

Houston Rockets center Clint Capela, who is playing for his native Switzerland on the international stage this summer, had a poor performance shooting the ball against Iceland over the weekend, sparking a lowlight video on Twitter.

Utah Jazz counterpart Rudy Gobert, a French native and national basketball team participant as well, reposted the video on Sunday with the caption “July is definitely over” and three laughing-face emojis. He also tagged Capela in it.

For context, Capela had posted a subtweet last month, warning everyone not to put too much stock into offseason noise of players improving their jumpers because “everybody can shoot in July.”

The timing was certainly suspect, as Gobert’s national teammate Nicolas Batum had just tweeted a video of the seven-footer flashing his three-point range in the gym a few hours before Capela’s post.

Back to Sunday — Capela caught wind of Gobert’s barb and tweeted back that he should take two shots outside of the paint in a game first before talking.

The two big men have done battle both on the international stage as well as in the playoffs each of the last two years (both victories by Houston). Gobert also has a history with other members of the Rockets, and it’s clear that there is no love lost between the two conference rivals.

Nicolas Batum out 8-12 weeks after tearing ligament in elbow

Nicolas Batum Hornets

Nicolas Batum is expected to miss 8-12 weeks after tearing a ligament in his elbow, according to a report.

The Vertical’s Shams Charania reports the news on Batum:

Batum has been a valuable player for the Charlotte Hornets the past two seasons. He averaged 15.1 points, 6.2 rebounds and 5.9 assists per game last season for the Hornets. He’s entering the second of a five-year deal with the team that will pay him $120 million.

Jeremy Lamb and Malik Monk will likely see increased action for the Hornets in light of Batum’s injury.

Nicolas Batum’s CT scan on brain comes back negative

Nicolas Batum Hornets

Nicolas Batum and the Charlotte Hornets received some good news on Wednesday.

Batum underwent a CT scan of his brain after he was dealing with painful migraines that have led him to miss two games. The Hornets said that the scan came up negative.

Batum missed Monday’s game against the Bulls and also was declared out for Wednesday’s game against the Pacers.

The 28-year-old signed a five-year, $120 million contract with the Hornets last year. He is averaging 15.4 points and 5.9 assists per game — both career-high marks — this season, to go along with 6.7 rebounds per game.

Image Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

Report: Nicolas Batum dealing with painful migraines, undergoing CT scan on brain

Charlotte Hornets swingman Nicolas Batum will miss his second consecutive game on Wednesday, and now there appears to be some concern that he could be dealing with a bigger health issue.

According to a report by Chris Haynes of ESPN, Batum has been battling painful migraines and is undergoing a CT scan on his brain.

The 28-year-old Batum, who is averaging 15.4 points, 6.7 rebounds, and 5.9 assists per game in 63 appearances for the Hornets this season, sat out during Monday’s loss to the Chicago Bulls and has already been ruled out for Wednesday’s game against the Indiana Pacers.

Migraines are no joke (just ask this fellow NBA player), so the hope here is that Batum’s CT scan checks out OK and that he’ll be able to recover quickly.

Image Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

Nicolas Batum could miss remainder of Heat series


Could this be au revoir to the Charlotte Hornets’ postseason hopes?

According to a report by Justin Verrier of ESPN on Thursday, Hornets swingman Nicolas Batum could miss the remainder of the team’s first-round playoff series against the Miami Heat with a sprained right ankle.

Batum was injured in the fourth quarter of Wednesday’s 115-103 Game 2 loss when he stepped on the foot of Heat rookie Justise Winslow and was forced to exit the game.

Here is video of the injury:

Per Verrier, Hornets big man Al Jefferson does not expect Batum to be back this series, saying, “It looked bad when it happened, looking at his ankle now, it’s pretty bad. That’s part of the game. I feel like, me, personally, I don’t think he will be able to come back.”

Hornets head coach Steve Clifford was similarly worried, saying that he was “very” concerned about Batum’s injury.

Batum, 27, finished the regular season with averages of 14.9 points per game, 6.1 rebounds per game, and 5.8 assists per game. He looked like the best acquisition of the offseason by a mile as his playmaking, floor-spacing style of play helped transform a once-rotten Hornets offense into a top-10 team in offensive efficiency in 2015-16, per ESPN.

Also a pesky, smart defender and an excellent rebounder for his position, Batum is essentially irreplaceable for Charlotte. If he is indeed unavailable for the remainder of the series, we can basically wrap this one up with a bow on top for Miami.

Video via NBA Reddit

Image Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

H/T RealGM

Nicolas Batum hilariously shoots down Raptors rumors on Twitter


Charlotte Hornets swingman Nicolas Batum has yet to play in a single game for his new team and already rumors of his departure are running rampant.

Batum, who was acquired from the Portland Trail Blazers in late June in exchange for Gerald Henderson and Noah Vonleh, is widely suggested to have interest in joining the Toronto Raptors when he becomes an unrestricted free agent next summer. This per Grantland’s Zach Lowe, who published a long-form piece about the Hornets on Tuesday.

Batum is an impending unrestricted free agent on a borderline playoff team, diving into an unprecedented cap frenzy in which two-dozen suitors could offer $20 million per season. Batum’s people have already made noise about how much Batum would like to play in Toronto, a city that appeals to his international roots, per several league sources. He is a flight risk, even though both Cho and Chad Buchanan, the team’s assistant GM, know Batum well from their days in Portland.

Apparently, this is news to Batum who took to Twitter hours later to refute the rumors in comical fashion.

Make no mistake: Batum is fully focused on the Charlotte Hornets, and the Charlotte Hornets alone right now.

The 26-year-old should bring a lot to the table for a young Charlotte team next season. His “do-it-all” arsenal will fit like a glove in Coach Steve Clifford’s growing culture of defensive fundamentals and ball movement. Batum will provide the team with a secondary creator behind Kemba Walker and another perimeter stopper defensively next to Michael Kidd-Gilchrist. He’ll also offer increased spacing and even small-ball 4 capabilities to a Hornets squad that found the floor horribly cramped last season. It will be exciting for Batum as he steps into a bigger offensive role than the scraps he was left to fight for in Portland.

This is a growing trend in the NBA as the looming cap boom continues to spark greater fears all around the league of “flight risks,” as Lowe terms it. And Toronto poses a juicy destination for Batum, especially with their heightened emphasis on versatile perimeter players of late (as evidenced by the money they gave to DeMarre Carroll this offseason). Still, Charlotte can at least look forward to a 2015-16 season where Batum, one of the NBA’s most underrated talents, will help them attempt to escape the Eastern Conference flotsam where they have seemingly resided for all eternity.

H/T ProBasketballTalk