On Tuesday, Chris Paul announced that he’s withdrawing his name from consideration to play for the U.S. Men’s Olympic team this summer in Rio de Janeiro. One of the world’s other basketball powerhouses may also be without a key player — according to international basketball reporter David Pick, Hornets forward Nicolas Batum has yet to decide whether or not he’s going to play for the French national team.
Batum has been a staple on the French team, playing in the 2012 Summer Olympics in London, as well as the 2014 FIBA World Cup and the 2011, 2013 and 2015 EuroBasket tournaments. But sitting out the Rio games would not be a surprise: Batum is set to become an unrestricted free agent for the first time in his career after an excellent season in Charlotte, and he’s expected to be one of the most widely sought-after players on the market. He’s already very accomplished in the international game, so it’s totally understandable if he wants to take this summer off to ensure that he’s as healthy and rested as possible going into his next contract. But he hasn’t made a final decision yet.