That didn’t mean that Giannis didn’t still believe in himself. Know his worth. The following year, before tip-off at Charlotte, Giannis sat on the sideline with Oppenheimer. They watched Charlotte’s Nicolas Batum, a 6-foot-8 forward having an all-star kind of season, warm up. “You see Batum?” Oppenheimer said to Giannis. Giannis nodded. “Look at him,” Oppenheimer said. “Really look at him. He’s a really good player. If you work really hard, you might be able to be a Nic Batum type of player.” Giannis stared at his coach for a second, not frowning but looking surprised. A bit offended. “Coach,” Giannis said, “if I become Nic Batum, I’m going back to Greece.”
September 26, 2021 | 8:50 pm EDT Update
Adam Zagoria: Kyrie Irving is expected at Nets’ media day Monday, per league sources. We’ll see how it plays out as he’s likely to face a lot of vaccination-related questions in the wake of the @RollingStone story.
Arash Markazi: LeBron James, Carmelo Anthony and Talen Horton-Tucker are in a suite for today’s Rams-Buccaneers game. pic.twitter.com/2b0bmLPw6V
September 26, 2021 | 6:21 pm EDT Update
Shams Charania: The Los Angeles Lakers are planning to sign two-way guard Austin Reaves to a new two-year contract, sources tell @TheAthletic @Stadium. Reaves converted to a standard NBA contract, becomes Lakers‘ 14th roster spot.