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Maxey: Checking In With Blazers F Nicolas Batum In France

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Brother Wendell Maxey checked in with Portland Trail Blazers forward Nicolas Batum in France, where he is starring for SLUC Nancy.

Here's an excerpt from his must-read piece on

He has concentrated on developing his low post game and has the basketball in his hands more often running the pick-and roll as a point-forward. Batum is also noticeably more verbal on the floor, employing breaks in the action to educate and instruct teammates. 

Clearly, Batum has taken his overall game to the next level. 

"When the ball is in my hands I know I can make plays happen and just not stand in the corner and wait. When the game is on the line and the ball is in my hands I want them to trust me and know that everything is going to be okay," asserted Batum. 

"The coach told me I am the boss of the team. This is my team, so I need to be vocal and I need to talk to them and regroup. At halftime I am the one who talks first. I tell guys that we need to wake up. This is our home and we need to protect (it). "     

Batum has already won Euroleague player of the week honors twice.

-- Ben Golliver | | Twitter