NBA Analyst: ‘Every Free Agent, Every Veteran Guard, They All Want To Play With Victor Wembanyama’

Everyone wants to play with Victor Wembanyama.

Victor Wembanyama lived up to all the hype surrounding him when he entered the NBA by having a fabulous rookie season. Wembanyama’s exploits as a rookie have led to players lining up to play with him on the San Antonio Spurs, according to draft expert Jonathan Givony.

“Every free agent, all the veteran guards that are going to be in the market, they all want to play with Victor,” Givony said on The Ringer’s NBA Draft Show.

(starts at 1:11 mark):

I certainly don’t blame anyone for wanting to play with Wembanyama, who averaged 21.4 points, 10.6 rebounds, 3.9 assists, 1.2 steals, and 3.6 blocks per game in the 2023-24 season. The 20-year-old finished runner-up for Defensive Player of the Year and became the first rookie in NBA history to make the NBA All-Defensive First Team.

While the Spurs still ended the season with a woeful 22-60 record, there is no doubt in my mind that Wembanyama will turn their fortunes around soon enough. According to Givony, the team also wants to help in that regard. He revealed they want to win now and are not interested in finding themselves in the lottery next year.

Givony thinks the Spurs might try to trade their fourth and eighth pick in this 2024 NBA Draft to get a star guard like Darius Garland from the Cleveland Cavaliers. He has also heard that the only untouchable players on the roster are Wembanyama and Devin Vassell, so the Spurs might well be the ones to pull off a big move this offseason.

Victor Wembanyama Revealed Players Have Contacted Him To Team Up

It appears it is not just that players are thinking about wanting to play with Wembanyama, but they have told him that as well. Wembanyama spoke about players already recruiting him to team up.

“Yeah, I’ve received some messages – even from prospects… It’s a whole new world that I’m eager to discover. One day, I’ll have to be involved in this [roster construction], I guess.” 

Imagine being a rookie in the NBA and having players tell you they want to play with you. That has to be an incredible feeling and shows just how highly players think of Wembanyama’s capabilities.

This willingness shown by players to join does make life easier for the Spurs. They do have to make some moves or acquire a notable free agent if they are to make the playoffs next year.

I expect Wembanyama to be even better in 2024-25, but he’s going to need some more help if the Spurs’ record is to improve significantly in what is a loaded Western Conference. They haven’t made the playoffs for five years in a row now and it’s not going to get any easier moving forward either.

Wembanyama’s presence on the team does put some more pressure on the Spurs to get their act together too, I think. He has made it crystal clear since the moment he entered the NBA that he wants to win.

If the Spurs are unable to put Wembanyama in a position to do so, he might decide to go elsewhere, which would be catastrophic for the franchise. What does give you some optimism that they will get it right is their track record. Head coach Gregg Popovich and CEO R. C. Buford have been there and done that, having won five championships together.

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