Report: Hornets’ Nicolas Batum won’t need surgery

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Nicolas Batum tore a ligament in his elbow, the type of injury that could throw the Hornets’ playoff hopes into peril a year after injuries helped keep them out of the postseason.

The initial report said he’d miss 8-12 weeks. Charlotte said he’d miss at least 6-8 weeks.

Rick Bonnell of The Charlotte Observer:

Charlotte Hornets guard Nic Batum got encouraging news from a Dallas specialist, indicating surgery isn’t necessary to heal from the torn ligament in his left elbow, a source said.

That increases hope Batum will return on the near side of projections.

He’s a capable starter and important to the Hornets as a lead playmaker on their second units. Kemba Walker, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist and Jeremy Lamb can probably collectively pick up the slack among the starters. But when Walker sits, who facilitates the offense? Michael Carter-Williams, who’s battling his own injury issues? Malik Monk, a rookie?

Charlotte will miss Batum – but maybe for not as long as feared.