The 2022/2023 NBA season opens its doors on Tuesday, October 18 after a 4-month wait. And today, an overview of the French players who will play this season in the biggest league in the world. With our silver medalists Rudy Gobert and Evan Fournier as spearheads, the tricolor contingent will still be present this season. We Sport presents the French players who will play on the NBA 2022/2023 season floors.
NBA season 2022/2023: 9 French players on the court
They will be 9 this season to tread the floors of the NBA. While some have much-needed roles in their franchise, others will try to get time and a roster spot. Overview of the French contingent for the NBA 2022/2023 season:
A new start for Rudy Gobert
NBA Team: Minnesota Timberwolves
Transferred to the Minnesota Wolves after 10 in Utah, Rudy Gobert is starting a new chapter in his career. Best defender in the NBA 3 times, the silver medalist of the last Eurobasket, and elected in the 5 of the competition, will form an attractive racket with Karl Anthony Towns. Even if the complementarity will remain to be proven on the ground, this interior doublet could take the franchise to a new level. The tricolor pivot will be there to bring his defense and his screens in order to free up his teammates, and his agreement with D’Angelo Russell on pick-and-roll could also be interesting for his new franchise. Seeing Rudy Gobert in a new context arouses curiosity and the French pivot will have to prove himself!
What role for Evan Fournier?
NBA Team: New York Knicks
Evan Fournier in New York episode 2. Arrived in the summer of 2021 in the Big Apple, the native of Charenton begins his second season in front of fans at Madison Square Garden. After a complicated exercise both individually and collectively, the French player will have to show more defensive qualities in order to get a little more playing time. Confined in a long-distance catch and shoot role by Tom Thibodeau, the a former Magic player, however, is not a pure shooter, preferring to drive into penetration or take the interval. In transfer rumors this summer, Evan Fournier may be in the hot seat during the 2022/2023 NBA season, but there is no doubt that the tricolor’s fighting spirit will always be there!
Nicolas Batum, the Clippers’ key man for the 2022/2023 NBA season?
NBA Team: Los Angeles Clippers
Rested during the summer, Nicolas Batum will attack his 3th season with the Los Angeles Clippers. Having become indispensable in Tyronn Lue’s system, Batman brings his vision of the game and his intelligence. Game facilitator and always altruistic, we could see his absence weigh in the game of the France team during the Eurobasket. A good defender and capable of sanctioning 3 points, Nicolas Batum will seek to reach the NBA Finals with his team, and his support for Kawhi Leonard and Paul George can only be beneficial for the Clippers.
The last chance for Timothé Luwawu-Cabarrot?
NBA team: Phoenix Suns (training camp)
It wasn’t until after Eurobasket that TLC received a call inviting him to the Phoenix Suns training camp to try and secure a guaranteed contract. The silver winger in Berlin will try to enter the squad of a 6th franchise in his career (76ers, Thunder, Bulls, Nets and Hawks). Known for his defensive qualities and his 3-point catch-and-shoot, Timothé Luwawu-Cabarrot has one last chance during this NBA 2022/2023 season, before a possible return to Europe?
Frank Ntilikina, a well-established rotation with the Mavs
NBA Team: Dallas Mavericks
In Texas for a year, Frank Ntilikina feels good in Dallas. Although limited to 12 minutes of playing time last season, his contribution by sequences, in attack as in defense, can relieve the base back of the Mavericks. Appreciated by the Texan staff, he could take advantage of the departure of Jalen Brunson to gain minutes and show his qualities even more during this new campaign.
Killian Hayes, still everything to prove
NBA Team: Detroit Pistons
Time running out for Killian Hayes? Drafted in 7th position in 2020, the French leader is struggling to find his place in the Pistons squad. With the arrival of Cade Cunningham last year, and that of Jaden Ivey during the last draft, the future darkened for the former Cholet. It is therefore time to finally show up offensively to bring points to a Detroit attack which was already very dependent on C.Cunnigham last season.
Théo Malédon, a beneficial last minute transfer or not?
NBA Team: Houston Rockets
Transferred at the end of September to the Houston Rockets, Théo Malédon arrives in a different context from that of the Thunder. Having stayed in an incubator for a good part of last season, the leader of the France team will have to find a place in a very young roster with Kevin Porter Jr and Jalen Green in the back positions. Nothing easy for the Rouennais who will have to prove himself each time he comes into play to hope to settle in the rotation.
NBA 2022/2023 season: Killian Tillie and Moussa Diabaté for a place in the roster
NBA team: Memphis Grizzlies and Los Angeles Clippers
For the last 2 French players on the program, the minutes will be difficult to find. For Killian Tillie, the mission will once again be difficult. Author of good streaks last season when he was on the field, the youngest of the Tillie family saw the DNPs follow one another at the end of the regular season and the play-offs. In a workforce cut for the heights of the Western Conference, Killian Tillie will have to pass a milestone to get more playing time.
For the 2n/a, his first season in the League should be shared between the NBA and especially the G-League. Drafted in 43th position (second round), Moussa Diabaté arrives in a workforce there also cut for the top of the ranking. If Nicolas Batum could take him under his wing, the young 20-year-old French pivot could make his mark in the lower league to occasionally be called up for the NBA. But for his first year in the NBA, the objective will be to get his bearings, to develop physically before a second year which will be more important on an individual level.