LAS VEGAS — It’s been a little more than nine months since Victor Wembanyama’s educational exhibitions in Henderson, Nevada. Scouts salivated when they saw him score 73 points in two exhibition games and considered drafting him.
The next question was, who would pick Wembanyama with the No? 1 generally speaking pick — the San Antonio Spikes won those distinctions in the draft lottery — and how great he really could be in the NBA.
Although it is yet to be determined whether Wembanyama lives up to the hype that has surrounded him, it may be a good thing that NBA Summer League performances frequently do not mean much.
He got done with nine focuses, eight bounce back and five blocks in his Late spring Association debut, a 76-68 Spikes prevail upon the Charlotte Hornets on Friday night. He shot only 2-for-13 from the field with additional turnovers (three) and individual fouls (four) than made field objectives.
Matt Nielsen, the head coach of the Spurs Summer League, stated, “I think all in all he did a good job.” Clearly, there’s a ton of consideration on him, you can discuss the external stuff. Yet, the genuineness, that was something that this evening clearly wrapped him up as it would. I thought he explored it generally lovely well.”
No. 2 in general pick Brandon Mill operator had 16 focuses and 11 bounce back in his presentation for Charlotte.
Since those performances in Henderson, the French center Wembanyama, who stands at 7 feet 4 inches, has acquired a certain aura of mystery. He was one of the best NBA prospects, according to scouts. A few days before being selected, he threw out the first pitch at Yankee Stadium.
That excitement naturally reached Las Vegas on Friday. Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, once one of the greatest NBA prospects ever, joined the many people waiting outside the Thomas & Mack Center to watch as early as 3 a.m.
However, Wembanyama’s debut had more negative aspects than positive ones. He sometimes felt the game was too fast for him.
Wembanyama laughed as he said, “Honestly, I didn’t really know what I was doing on the court tonight.” I’m working on improving for the next game. The significant thing is to be prepared for the season,” he added.
The crowd erupted in applause each time he touched the ball, and he started slowly, missing his first three attempts. Fans chanted “MVP” as he made his first basket, a one-and-one layup in the first quarter.
Quite a bit of Wembanyama’s abilities that left scouts enchanted were shown right off the bat in the game, particularly his ball dealing with. He had a speedy hybrid spill from the 3-direct line then a pass that drove toward free tosses. The 7-foot-4 focus easily brought the ball up the court, as well, subsequent to snatching a bounce back.
However, he had trouble with his jump shot and occasionally turned down open looks from teammates. The big man was put off by contact, and two of his turnovers occurred when he was bumped while dribbling the ball. Wembanyama couldn’t genuinely get in any mood repulsively accordingly.
Wembanyama was put to the test at the rim by the opposing players, who showed no reluctance to attack him. Miller gave him a nice crossover. Amari Bailey got past him to score an and-one layup. Kai Jones put him on a banner on a back street oop dunk in a feature play.
Wembanyama is expected to continue playing in the Summer League on Sunday before suspending it until the NBA preseason. The Spurs will probably want to give Wembanyama some time off because his French season ended on June 16.
On Sunday, he might have to deal with No. 3 in general pick Hurry Henderson: the same player who played opposite Wembanyama last year in Nevada. Those exhibitions made extraordinary publicity. He doesn’t appear to be able to match it at this time.