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Batum and Freeland Honorable Mentions on Kevin Arnovitz's "all-Olympics team"

Nicolas Batum, France and Joel Freeland, Great Britain, were listed in Kevin Arnovitz' analysis of the best performances of the 2012 Summer Olympics in London as Honorable Mentions.

Blog Batum – "I would have taken Evan Turner 1st"

http://basketsession.com/blog-batum-jaurais-pris-evan-turner-en-1er/ I won't be able to translate the latest blog from Batum it but I can sum it up. - He's learnt about Kevin Pritchard being fired just before the draft. It's sad because he's the one who made him come to Portland. He wishes him the best and he's sure he'll find work easily. - He followed the draft with trainers, the intendant, video people and a few other people from the staff in a room close to the managers office. He's followed the NCAA this year and he liked the draft, it was homogenous. - He would have picked Evan Turner as a 1st choice. He doesn't really know why but he prefers him to John Wall, he prefers to see him play, he loves his game. It's clean he scores 20 pts but also has 6 assists while he's a 2. He was the best scorer of his conference and best passer. And he wonders what they'll do with Arenas now they have John Wall. - He would have put Wall to Philadelphia. Washington could have given a 2nd chance well a 15th chance... to Arenas who's still a big player and have Turner as the 2. And in Philly, they have a guard problem, no 2 or 3, so it would have been more logical. But that's just an opinion. - Noone in the staff agrees with him, they all repeat what they've heard on TV that he was Magic Johnson in the body of Gary Payton… But he still likes John Wall, he's really good. The only thing he doesn't like about him is his commercial, the one for Reebok. - A few picks surprised him, like Hayward in 9. He thought he would be 15th or more. And he wondered why New Jersey took Favors if they really wanted to bring Boozer or another 4. To prepare the future probably. He tought they would pick Wesley Johnson. They would have had Devin Harris, Courtney Lee, Johnson, that sounded nice. - So his personnal mock draft was Turner, Wall and Johnson for the first 3 spots. He didn't have Favors in his first 6. He has a real body, he's very interesting and has a big potential but he wouldn't see him this high. He hopes he will prove him wrong but anyways he probably doesn't give a damn about Batum's opinion and he's right ! - He's met Kevin Seraphin after the Adidas Eurocamp, he's eaten with him on sunday. He told him how the draft was running and they chatted. He thinks he has the mindset to make it. And he has the body. Apparently, he was weighted 280 pounds and 9% of fat mass. Bigs with these figures aren't common. You have to take the opportunity when there's one. - He's stopped watching the draft after Kévin Seraphin. When he left he was told Webster was traded for Ryan Gomes. In his previous blog post he said McMillan told him he was counting on Batum to be more dominant in the 5 so he thinks the trade is going the same way. - By the way Portland got 2 guards and got Babbitt. He plans to give him the french translation of his name [in french Babbitt sounds like "low cock" or like "my cock"] It's a shameful name but he has to tell him. He remembers he had a lot of fun with Alexis Ajinça [who was drafted the same year as him] about Hasheem Thabeet's name [Thabeet means"your cock" in french]. It's in the same vein of the wordplay contests he had with Ali Traoré last year [in the France team]. Alexis and him were asking him " You assume Thabeet ? ". They didn't explain the joke to him but he's translated it to O.J. Mayo so he must have told him. So the next time they play each other Thabeet will block him 15 times when Batum goes in the paint against him. You're going to see it in the stats for Memphis-Portland : Hasheem Thabeet 8 blocks, Batum 8 blocks against… - But well Babbitt will have several mandatory jokes, plus he's a rookie. When he saw Babbitt to Portland he told himself " You can't do that to me. You're lucky Alexis Ajinça isn't with me. " But he really was hoping Kevin would come to Portland. Everybody in Portland was really behind him, but Portland only had the 22nd pick.

Rudy vs. Nicolas: 9/17/09

Looks like Spain will face France in the first game of the quarter-finals on Thursday. Time is not yet set, but expect it to start in mid-morning Portland time. Winner goes to the semis and gets a spot in the 2010 World Championships. Loser can finish no better than 5th and will have to win the next game to lock up a 2010 Worlds spot.

Nicolas Batum : " Doing something great " 09/01/09

Just in blue, Batum earned his stripes in the line up alongside Parker, Diaw. The Norman is the new gold nugget of French Basketball The revelation of the qualifying campaign for the Bleus Nicolas Batum takes stocks a week before the start of the Euro. Did you have doubts about the Belgians? Not at all, we really were hungry to win. We've attacked since the beginning, then we went all out. We were pushed from start to finish. The public in Pau has transcended us. We were not 5 on the court but 7 805. We wanted to show the rest of Europe we weren't going to Poland and be kidding. You're young, in the starting five of the Bleus and qualified for the Euro, what kind of feelings is it giving ? It's huge. I'm 20, I'm going to the Euro, I'll try to take as much advantage as possible and make something great. You've made great progress since you left Le Mans in June 2008. In what areas in particular ? I think it's mostly mental I made progress. I 've made a step ! I feel more mature, better in my game. You look super easy on the court It is the impression I give and without bragging I'm not feeling exhausted ! I'm pretty pleased with myself ! "Parker, a model" You are surrounded by names like Parker and Diaw in the starting five. How do you live with that ? Parker, Diaw, Pietrus and Turiaf are locomotives. I told them, guys, I'm following you (laughs). What a long way since Pont-l'Évêque ? I was fortunate to be well supported very very early. In the pre-teen team in Pont-l'Evêque then in Caen under 16 (I'm the godfather of this team) and then in Le Mans with Philippe Desnos. Last week you came back in your hometown to participate in workouts with the 5th division team of Pont l'Eveque. Is it a need ? In fact I felt awkward staying 2 or 3 days at home. I like to settle ! It's refreshing to be in a gym I know well with players from my hometown. My sister is going to take class back in Portland next week. I'll join her with my mother after the Euro. What inspires you the first-round group with Germany, Latvia, Russia? It is very open because a few stars are missing but we must be careful because it is a European championship. We've experienced in Pau what having the homecourt advantage meant... The France team has great potential, can it aim high in the Euro ? Of course, we must just stay aggressive in defense, it's the key. Then we start running and we're hardly stoppable. Vincent Collet said the minimum would be quarter-finals ! The minimum's minimum is to qualify for the World championship in 2010 in Turkey. In addition, winning a medal would be huge ! " 89 points in pre-teen " Everything is going very fast for you ! A trajectory of a meteorite. Are you in another world? No, my feet are on the ground. Parker is humble yet it is one of the best players in the world, a star ! That's an example ! "Humility is the beginning of talent" often says Collet. Do you feel it's true ? Indeed ! I'm staying normal. I won't change ! The best memory of your young career? My record for points in one game: 89 points with the pre-teen team of Pont l'Eveque (smile). My team made 150 and took .... 11.
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