NBA Rumors: Jeremy Lin, Al Jefferson not a big loss for Charlotte? Nicolas Batum says Hornets better with Marco Belinelli, Roy Hibbert

NBA Rumors: Jeremy Lin, Al Jefferson not a big loss for Charlotte? Nicolas Batum says Hornets better with Marco Belinelli, Roy Hibbert

Jeremy Lin and Al Jefferson left the Charlotte Hornets via free agency this 2016 offseason. Nicolas Batum, one of the stars for the Hornets, has declared that both losses are not going to be missed with their own free agent acquisitions this summer.

In a recent interview, Batum talked about the contract situation for the Hornets last year and how it affected the play in Charlotte.

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“(Fans) talked a lot about contracts, because of (so many) free agents. But we forgot about that and played for the team and for the city,” Batum said via The Charlotte Observer. “Contracts work themselves out.”

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Nicolas Batum earned a $120 million contract over five years from the Hornets after NBA rumors linked him to other teams like the Los Angeles Lakers and Dallas Mavericks. Batum decided to stay in Charlotte and he will be one of the top offensive options for the team alongside star point guard Kemba Walker.

Batum also commented on the loss of their former teammates, Jeremy Lin and Al Jefferson, who decided to sign with the Brooklyn Nets and Indiana Pacers, respectively.

“We lost Jeremy and Big Al and C-Lee, but we’ve got (Michael Kidd-Gilchrist) back. We’re getting Marco (Belinelli) and Big Roy (Hibbert), I think we got better,” Batum boldly claimed in the same article.

Jeremy Lin becomes a starting point guard in Brooklyn after playing behind as backup to Walker in Charlotte last season.

Lee went to the New York Knicks in free agency whie Belinelli and Hibbert were acquired via trade (Sacramento Kings) and free agency, respectively.

ALSO READ: Charlotte Hornets NBA 2016-2017 Season Preview

Are the Hornets a better team without Jeremy Lin, Al Jefferson and Courtney Lee? All three were important pieces in the Hornets’ offensive system last season, when they made the NBA Playoffs.

Photo Courtesy: HugoTHornet/Wikimedia

  • Soursdey Met

    Bold statement from an overpaid player with a career stats of 11 points and 3 assists. Charlotte will be 39-43 this coming season.

    • norah mackenzie

      most likely less – none of the players on the hornets share the ball enough – and lin was the one who kept passing the ball to the others and batum knows that – not to start any issue but there was zero need for batum to say this abt jeremy. the hornets will realise the loss of lin when the season starts i think

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  • norah mackenzie

    – MKG missed a lot of the last season due to injury – batum was out for a while as well – the team had lin to pull them through – the same lin who pulled the hornets during the playoffs – thanks a lot for the gratitude nic – will not be forgotten – al jefferson and jeremy lin and courtney lee all helped the hornets a lot esp al who was there for 3 seasons i think and to dismiss them all like that is not very nice at all. let’ see if you live up to your max contract

    • westseadoc

      Batum has the right to his likely erroneous opinion. I don’t think he is being dismissive of Lin’s contributions, only guilty of poor judgement.

      • norah mackenzie

        question is why did the hornets give this guy a max contract though? their decision of course but do i think he is worth it – the guy needs pple to give him the ball – is he the type to create or drive to score?

  • westseadoc

    It remains to be seen! Kemba cannot stand up to the responsibility and physical demands of playing every night. Lin helped take pressure off Kemba freeing him to rest as well as taking some of the scoring responsibility off his shoulders. Very few teams have performed consistently at the highest level without a great bench, especially in the NBA game today, which is higher paced overall. Jefferson was a true force in the middle and Hibbert has never been that strong of a presence. I think they will fare worse, though MKG should be a strong addition. His scoring is not quite as strong as Lin’s and Lin’s tendency to drive often put the other team at a foul disadvantage in the middle.

    • norah mackenzie

      there is a reason why kemba’s stats improved so much over the past season – because lin was there to help him out a lot – if pple think that hibbert or sessions are the type to drive to the net then i havent seen them doing that. i think that nic batum sd not have said anything at all – because there are a lot of “ifs” in his statement

  • Mr.Borisuri

    Well, he said what he felt, but hopefully he will feel the same way at the end of the season.

  • erik b

    They might have been able to stay had it not been for greedy overpaid players like Bantum. Of course, it is really the Hornets fault for paying a player who avg 11 pts a game a $100 million. Hibbert didn’t do crap for the Lakers that is why his time was short. He is also overrated.

  • N.P.A

    The Hornets won’t even make it to the playoffs.

  • setrue

    Nic, after saying Hornets are better without Lin, you better produce like a max player because you have no excuses if team under performs this season since you have a better team. Now its on you!

    • orLinaryjoe

      A lot of expectations for a 24 mil/ yr player.


    Hahahah.. over rated over paid player talk about don’t miss them 3..Did you guys ever seen Batum played last year ..He a turn over machine. he play ok..if i were the hornet gm , i pay him 14 a year..he not that GREAT. The Hornets play better WHEN BATUM WAS OUT. Every thing ran smoothly when he was out..If Batum was out the last 2 playoff game, then Hornets might have a chance to win 1 of the 2 last game.. He came in and f it up.

    • Tuan Nguyen

      Actually his turnover is getting less toward the end of the season. I agreed he is not worth $120m for 5 years and I think Hornets management really screw up on this contract. As a matter of fact, they already knew that they might not get into playoff this coming season; so they want to trade for Greg Monroe from Detroit.

  • Kevin Wong

    Well, what do you expect Batum to say? You can’t throw your new teammates under the bus by saying we were better with last year’s roster. Hopefully Batum will produce like he did for Portland and MKG will stay healthy. Hibbert is a huge question mark. He had some great moments in IND a few years ago, but hasn’t produced much in the last 3. Belineli is a good competent player and might be a better fit with CHA than Lin, but their styles are very different. I’m not sure CHA will make the playoffs this year, I’ll have to give a month to see how the rest of the east looks…it’s hard to keep up with all the trades and acquisitions.