The Alamo City is expressing its immense excitement after the San Antonio Spurs officially extended Devin Vassell's contract on Monday. Vassell signed on the dotted line, agreeing to a five-year, $146 million deal with the developing squad.
Although the city is rooting for him, there are two people who are the most overcome with joy from this momentous occasion -- the ones who were there for his first step, dribbles, and made baskets.
Cynthia and Andrew Vassell say they are so overwhelmed and overcome with how blessed they are. "We haven't really had the opportunity to recognize it for what it is," Mrs. Vassell told us. "We woke up this morning with tears flowing and just taking time to thank God."
She continued to reminisce on the moment she knew her baby boy was not changing his mind about his career path. “At 10 years old, he asked me, 'Mom, can you please stop asking me what I want to be when I grow up? Because I am going to be a basketball player.' From that point on, I was on the Devin Train.”
Devin Vassell's parents have been there for every step
Being such supportive parents, they were ready to go wherever that train took them. They relocated from their home in Atlanta, Georgia to San Antonio, Texas following the 2020 NBA Draft. This was to ensure their youngest son had the support he needed as he matriculated into his career as a professional athlete.
In a video documenting the moment of the signing, you can see Mrs. Vassell take a deep breath as the pen in the shooting guard's hand glides across the paper.
“That deep breath was because you all see him as Devin Vassell, the basketball player. But I will always see him as the baby boy the nurse put into my arms when he was born. Teaching him to walk. Just all of those milestones we went through flashed before my eyes."
They attribute their ability to stand in that room to God and his plan for Devin's life. Clearly, nothing could stop that plan. Until now, he’s been underestimated, but that hasn’t stopped the 23-year-old from always believing in himself.
Devin was drafted in 2020 amid a time of growing COVID-19 regulations. In his sophomore year, the San Antonio Spurs began making major roster adjustments, foreshadowing their redirection with the team and throwing him into unfamiliar territory. In his third year, the veteran was thrust into a leadership position while facing the misfortune of a knee injury.
Now Vassell is ready to show his journey of recovery was anything but time wasted.
Off the hardwood, one of his top priorities is his teammates. Vassell has been a catalyst for developing chemistry within the roster this offseason. He has played a principal role in orchestrating dinners and gatherings where the group of young men can develop a sense of comradery before this highly anticipated season.
"He is much stronger, much more aggressive and physical," said Coach Popovich at media day. He's more confident. He wants to prove himself, both as a player and a leader. He has been very vocal in the summer, demanding of his teammates, that sort of thing. He has already taken some big steps."
If the biggest thing the Spurs have to worry about is basketball and not outside distractions, I'm sure they can reach their goals. And Cynthia and Andrew Vassell will be there every step of the way.