The NBA preseason is a few weeks old now. For veterans with secure roster spots, the novelty has long since worn off, and most are simply going through the motions as they ready themselves for the 82-game grind of the regular season.
And then there's Nicolas Batum. The Charlotte Hornets forward swiped a Chicago inbounds pass with seconds remaining in a tie game and raced toward the bucket for the game-winning lay-in, when he was suddenly seized by either indecision or a full-blown existential crisis. With almost a full second left on the clock when this crisis hit him, could he have held on a little longer, gotten closer, and actually made the shot? Sure, but then where would we be? Not here.
Of course, Batum is from France, the country that invented the concept of ennui. He did everything but light up a cigarette and ruminate on the pointlessness of the entire scene. What is the point? There's no glory to be had; I only play now to avoid overtime. Is that the true meaning of existence—to avoid overtime?
The Hornets went on to win the game in OT, 108-104. Batum didn't play. It was all so very, very tedious.