In hopes of rescuing a regular season that is slowly getting away from his grasp, Nicolas Batum of the Charlotte Hornets took to desperate measures and guaranteed a win against the surging Philadelphia 76ers after a discouraging five-point loss to the L.A. Clippers on Saturday.
Batum told Keith Pompey of the Philadelphia Inquirer:
“We’re going to win this game on Monday. We will.”
“Are you guaranteeing it?” Pompey asked
“Yeah,” Batum said.
It would be a check his mouth wrote that his team couldn’t cash — with the Hornets falling short yet again in a 105-99 loss to the Sixers. It didn’t take long for the Philly players to catch on to it and call him out on his audacity.
The Joel Embiid-less Sixers still seem to have plenty of gas left in the tank, and with the impending return of rookie Ben Simmons, it could provide yet another playmaking option to snatch a few more wins by the end of the season.
The Hornets have struggled horribly, losing three in a row and 10 of their last 11 games, falling out of playoff contention. If they don’t turn this ride around, they’re likely to fall out of the playoff picture entirely.