Nuggets rookie Evan Fournier captivates late-night audience

NBA debut followed closely in France
by Aaron Lopez
Nuggets.com

It was just before 2 a.m. in Charenton, France, when their son’s image appeared on the television screen.

Though they could not be there in person, François and Meriem Fournier were able to share the moment via NBA League Pass when Denver Nuggets rookie Evan Fournier checked into his first NBA game.

Evan, drafted by the Nuggets three months earlier, scored his first basket less than 10 minutes later and helped spark a fourth-quarter comeback during Denver’s season-opening loss to the Philadelphia 76ers on Wednesday.

The debut (five points, one assist in 10:19) created a buzz in France, particularly at Poitiers Basket 86, where Fournier played for two seasons before entering the 2012 NBA Draft as a 19-year-old prospect.

Poitier communications director Benoit Dujardin exchanged enthusiastic text messages with Fournier’s parents during the game, and the team’s website later posted a story with the headline: “Evan a joué, Evan a marqué” (Evan plays, Evan scores).

“It was so fun to see Evan play (at last!) and perform,” Dujardin said in an e-mail.

Dujardin said Fournier entered the game at 1:56 a.m. Central European Time Thursday and scored his first points on a layup at 2:06 a.m.. The precise record-keeping came naturally for Dujardin, who produced a documentary about Fournier.

The film Evan: Le Reve Américan (The American Dream) premiered in Paris on Oct. 17.