The New York Knicks are reportedly interested in signing Frenchman Nicolas Batum to a max contract. Phil Jackson and company feels that the Charlotte Hornets’ shooting guard as the right man to boost their roster. The Toronto Raptors are also pursuing Batum.
Swingman Batum spent the first seven years of his NBA career at Portland Trail Blazers. Then, the 27-year-old then switched over to Charlotte Hornets where he posted a stellar performance.
He finished the regular season with averages of 14.9 points, 6.1 rebounds, 5.8 assists, and 2.0 3-point field goals made. The shooting guard set career-highs in terms of points and assists per game in the most eventful year of his NBA career.
And Phil Jackson and company desperately need a consistent performer at the shooting guard position. Carmelo Anthony too revealed the necessity of a star shooting guard in the Knicks‘ roster to bounce back to the playoffs next season. Carmelo Anthony was the only guy facilitating the offense in terms of assists in the Knicks side last season. In Batum, New York would get someone who is capable of orchestrating the offense. Remember the Knicks‘ ranked a lowly 26 in terms of assists in this regular season, one of the prime reasons they had to bow out cheaply from the league. The 27-year-old is a willing passer who can flick the ball selflessly, creating shots for others.
Certainly, Rajon Rondo is way ahead in this regard, but the Frenchman is a better shooter than Rondo.
The Knicks management is willing to reward his outstanding growth as the player with a max deal offer, according to Steve Kyler of Basketball Insider, but will Batum accept Knicks‘ max deal, or prefer to stay back at Hornets remains to be seen.
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