No one was sure where Cedi Osman would fit into the picture when the Spurs acquired him in a three-team trade earlier this summer, but he will soon have a chance to battle for one of the final spots on the roster when San Antonio kicks off training camp next Tuesday. Despite the uncertainty surrounding his future with the franchise, the veteran forward has already started getting familiar with his new teammates.
The players have arranged frequent minicamps throughout the offseason to build chemistry and teach the youngsters the ins and outs of the game, and Osman has been in the middle of the action. In an exclusive interview with the San Antonio Express-News, the 28-year-old shared his firsthand experience of getting to witness the ridiculous skill and limitless potential of Victor Wembanyama up close and personal.
"I’ve never seen anything like him, to be really honest. To be that tall and do all the stuff he does, he has a great opportunity to be one of the best in this league."- Cedi Osman
Osman watched his minutes and per-game numbers decrease during his last couple of seasons in Cleveland, but he could carve out a meaningful role off the bench with the Spurs if he survives the final round of cuts. No matter how things shake out in the 2-1-0 for the Turkish sharpshooter, he is thrilled about his recent change of scenery and the opportunity to suit up for such a celebrated organization.
"Definitely I was happy and celebrating that I would be here in San Antonio with this franchise. When you step on the court and you see all those banners, you feel great. It’s another reason to work harder and do anything for this team."- Cedi Osman
Though Gregg Popovich likely has no plans to make him a fulcrum of the offense, Osman could reinvent himself and reinvigorate his career in San Antonio. After being a part of a full-scale rebuild in Cleveland, he has the know-how to help the Spurs navigate the next chapter of their story, and he is prepared to become a mentor and leader for an inexperienced club that needs a steadying presence on and off the court.
"As a vet, I’m just here to help the young players on the roster and get them better. It’s a different experience. I was their age once, too. Now I’m in a different role. I’m definitely looking forward to it."- Cedi Osman
The Silver and Black have a depth chart stacked with talented forwards, including Keldon Johnson, Jeremy Sochan, Julian Champagnie, Reggie Bullock, and Doug McDermott. While Osman faces tough competition to crack the nightly rotation, his combination of playmaking, floor spacing, and marksmanship will make Brian Wright and the rest of the front office sweat over their looming personnel decisions.