Batum: '(Aldridge) doesn't want to get traded, he wants the team to get better'
Jorge Sierra at HoopsHype.com has posted a short Q&A with Nicolas Batum
covering various topics from his contentious contract negotiations in 2012 to his relationship with the Portland media. He also talks about the reports that LaMarcus Aldridge has requested a trade, reports that Batum obviously doesn't put much stock in ...
Who do you think is going to be the No. 1 guy on the team?
Batum: Although Damian had a great rookie season and has unbelievable talent and a bright future in front of him, I think LaMarcus [Aldridge] is our go-to guy. He is our franchise player. Damian may be a Top 10 point guard in the league right now, but LaMarcus is one of the best three power forwards and maybe No. 1.
There have been these rumors that he has privately demanded a trade from Portland...
Batum: I heard that too and I laughed when I read that. He doesn't want to get traded, he wants the team to get better. LaMarcus is a winner.
He has told you that?
Batum: I mean, I know that's what he wants. We had two bad seasons and missed the playoffs and wants the team to improve. I think he didn't ask for a trade. He wants to stay and win with the Blazers. He just wants a better team around him so we can get back to the playoffs.
Batum's opinion that Aldridge he wants the Trail Blazers to improve more than he wants to be traded is similar to a report that Chris Haynes wrote at the end of June
. It's also along the lines of what Aldridge himself has said in the few public statements he's given
this offseason. And Neil Olshey has noted on several occasions that Aldridge has been pleased
with the teams' personnel moves this offseason, moves which were made, at least in part, to fulfill Aldridge's request of improvement