Not awarded in 2020, the Alain Gilles trophy which rewards the best French basketball player of the year has returned and it is a certain Nicolas Batum who wins the bet, thus beating the defending champion Rudy Gobert as well as Sandrine Gruda. Considering what he proposed this year to the Clippers and with the Blues at the Olympic Games, we want to say that it is deserved.
We all remember where we were last August 5, around 4 p.m., when Nicolas Batum donned the hero costume during this France – Slovenia event that entered French basketball history. We all remember this absolutely fantastic chasedown block, which allowed the Blues to qualify for the grand final of the Olympic Games. And even if Vincent Collet’s men then fell arms in hand against Kevin Durant and Team USA, this action will forever remain in the Hall of Fame of blue-white-red basketball. And today, more than two months later, Nicolas Batum has just been elected French basketball player for the year 2021 according to the federation. Something tells us that there is a little connection. But it is not only this block and his overall performance at the Olympics that allowed Captain Nico to win the bet. Because even if this buzzer rescue is enough to give him the trophy for at least another ten years, his rebirth at the Clippers has also gone a long way in his favor. After completely exiting the Hornets project, Batum relaunched in style in Los Angeles, where he was able to bring his versatility and his playing intelligence, thus playing a real role in the big course of the Clips which went to the Finals. of Western Conference. Goodbye the reputation of an overpaid player, Nicolas proved to everyone that he was not burnt and that he still represented this super precious Swiss Army knife for any team, whether in the NBA or with the French team.
“I’m starting from a team that was not very strong and where I was no longer playing at all behind to have the third game time of a team candidate for the title. In addition, we eliminate Rudy Gobert in the Playoffs and I have a big role in this series. My quarter-final against Italy at the Olympic Games and against Luka Doncic [Klemen Prepelic, ndlr.] in the semi-finals, all those little things added up probably made people vote for me. I haven’t won a lot of individual prizes and this one is special in relation to my situation a year ago. It is really nice to have the recognition of my peers. “
– Nicolas Batum, in an interview with Julien Guérineau (via FFBB.com)
This Alain Gilles trophy is therefore the perfect symbol of the rebirth of Nicolas Batum, who – soon to be 33 years old – hopefully still has a few good years ahead of him. He extended to the Clippers this summer, where he’s like a fish in water. And given the importance he has in Vincent Collet’s group, we will continue to see him during the upcoming major events in the jersey of the Blues, obviously with an eye on Paris 2024.
Nicolas Batum elected French basketball player of the year, not sure that we would have bet on it a year ago. And that’s exactly what makes this trophy so beautiful. Rebelote in 2022? “I hope I will be beaten. There are so many players who have the talent for it. I wish them the best. “ Decidedly, altruistic to the end the Nico.
Text source: FFBB
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Nicolas Batum elected French basketball player of the year 2021: not surprising when you come out with the biggest counter in history