4 players the 76ers can trade for as one-year rentals this season
2. Nicolas Batum (SF/PF — LA Clippers)
From one European forward to another, Nicolas Batum has also been a familiar face for NBA fans since the late 2000s. But despite a career renaissance with the LA Clippers, his team’s logjam at the forward position could eventually push him out of the loop.
The Frenchman may not be the constant 15-5-5 threat he once was in Portland and early on in Charlotte, but his versatility has remained and remains his main calling card. His numbers look meager, but there’s more than meets the eye when gauging the veteran’s impact on the floor.
On offense, Batum’s reputation as an effective connector persists. He cannot function as a primary nor secondary playmaker anymore, but he’s one to always make the right reads and maximize his low usage. In addition, he’s an efficient, low-volume three-point shooter who’s almost automatic when left wide open.
Batum on defense, however, is probably more valuable. His athleticism has waned, but his length, surprising physicality, and defensive IQ makes him such a malleable cog on that end, almost like a Swiss Army knife. If the 76ers relegate PJ Tucker to a smaller role and find a taker for him, pursuing Batum would be a very solid replacement who could even end up as a better alternative.