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Blazers’ Batum says he wrote “We don’t lose to Spanish players,” was intended as joke

Portland Trail Blazers v Memphis Grizzlies - Game One

Portland Trail Blazers v Memphis Grizzlies - Game One

Frederick Breedon

It was meant to be an internal joke that got out and blown way out of proportion.

That according to Portland’s Nicolas Batum, who told he was the one who wrote the “We don’t lose to Spanish players” line on a motivational card in the team locker room. Batum, who is French and says he has family living in Spain, said it was a running joke with Spanish former teammate Victor Claver. The French and Spanish national hoops teams have had somewhat of a rivalry in recent years.

It probably wasn’t the smartest thing to write, but it doesn’t seem to be malicious or from the Blazers’ organization.

For his part, Marc Gasol — Spanish-born star for Memphis — blew off the “controversy.”