Nicolas Batum Looks Forward to Next Season
As his mother landed at Portland International Airport late last month, Nicolas Batum was beaming like only a son could. Sure, he was looking for a little home cooking, but even more, he was eager to show his mom his new-and-improved NBA game.
It had been almost two years since Sylvie Batum had seen her son play in the NBA, and roughly 14 months since United States customs agents detained her in Washington, D.C., and denied her entrance into the country during an attempted visit to Portland. She had seen Batum play in the NBA more than 50 times, but he was mostly young and unproven then.
This time would be special.
Batum had a more prominent role with the Trail Blazers, an exciting, do-it-all skill-set and a new swagger. Long before she boarded that plane to Portland, Batum told Sylvie she was in for a surprise.
“Remember what you saw two years ago?” Batum told his mom. “I’m a different player now. I’m going to give you a better show this time.”