A clutch effort that ensured a spot in the playoffs, hanging out at a party with Kylian Mbappe, and then getting emotional with his mother after finding out he was going to play for the San Antonio Spurs: these are just some of the highlights of his season.
Tuesday night was a very eventful one for Victor Wembanyama.
First, he led his Boulogne-Levallois Metropolitans to a victory over their in-town competition, Paris Basketball, by scoring 14 of his team’s total 22 points in a 92-85 triumph. Second, Wembanyama made a number of jump shots, although there were many people around him during the middle portion of the game. These shots allowed his team to grab the lead in the fourth quarter. After that, he sealed the deal with a resounding dunk with only six seconds left on the clock.
After the victory, which moved the Mets into the second seed for the upcoming playoffs in the French Pro A League, he celebrated at center court by yelling and triumphantly pumping his fists. Then he went around his home arena and signed autographs for fans and posed for pictures with superstars, such as the French movie star Omar Sy and the French soccer icon Mbappe.
Victor Wembanyama completed a regular season in which he topped the league in scoring, rebounding, and blocking with an average of 22 points, 11 rebounds, and three blocks per game, respectively. Before the game, he was presented with a plaque for leading the league in shot blocking, and it is anticipated that he will be awarded the league’s Most Valuable Player award this week.
A little while later, he was riding in a car on the way to Nike’s Paris headquarters on the Champs Elysees, dressed for a draft lottery celebration that began close to the stroke of midnight. Because the lottery didn’t start until two in the morning local time, he was joined at the spirited celebration by his family, teammates, coaches, friends, and celebrities. Unfortunately, because of this, the event had to continue well into the middle of the night.
Wembanyama, who is 19 years old, smiled and shook his head in surprise as ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski opened the lottery broadcast, declaring that NBA organizations considered him “maybe the greatest prospect in the history of team sports.” Wojnarowski’s comments came after Wojnarowski said that NBA teams viewed him as possibly the most highly anticipated player to enter the league.
Some of the senior agents and coaches in the room stared at each other as they tried to process the odd nature of the situation they found themselves in at the time.
As each team came off the board, there were murmurs across the tiny crowd. Wembanyama put his hand over his heart as the broadcast cut to a commercial break with four teams still competing: the Spurs, the Charlotte Hornets, the Houston Rockets, and the Portland Trail Blazers. The atmosphere was tense.
The crowd erupted in applause as soon as the envelope containing the second pick was opened to reveal a teal Hornets logo. This indicated that the Spurs had successfully obtained the winning number from 4,000 miles away. Wembanyama, surrounded by his parents on either side of him, suddenly burst into a smile before showing signs of emotion as he wiped his eyes in response to the seriousness of the situation.
Even though he made it obvious that he had yet to choose a preferred destination during the process, the Spurs are a famous team in France. This is since French national basketball heroes Boris Diaw and Tony Parker flourished and won titles while playing for the Spurs.
It was evident that Wembanyama, his operatives, and his family were content with the result.
After finding out where he was going, Wembanyama remarked, “My heart’s beating [fast].” “Everyone that I know and love is gathered here with me. It’s a truly incredible moment I will keep in my memory for the rest of my life.
The Spurs have failed to make the playoffs for four straight years after failing to do so for just the time in the previous 29 years, between 1990 and 2019. In 1997, this was the first time they had been successful in the draft lottery. The last two times the Spurs drafted, they selected Hall of Fame center David Robinson and Hall of Fame power forward Tim Duncan.
In a recent message, the NBA league office requested teams not to announce their pick if they won the lottery. However, as dawn neared in the capital of France, there was no ambiguity about his future.
After a long and eventful day, Wembanyama went to bed satisfied with the knowledge that he would join the Spurs.
He stated, “I’m trying to win a ring as soon as possible.” Therefore, get ready.