Yes, Primo's age is mostly to credit for what he's accomplishing, but the variety of ways the 18-year-old is making an imprint with the Spurs at such an early age is incredibly impressive. The last time he played for more than just garbage time minutes, Primo joined Kobe Bryant, Tracy McGrady, and LeBron James as the fourth-youngest player ever to make multiple threes in a game.
In a season-high 18 minutes against the defending Western Conference champions, Primo joined some more Hall of Famers in an unexpected way once again. Posting as many blocks as the entire Phoenix Suns team, his four blocks made him the third-youngest player in NBA history with that many or more in a single game.
The San Antonio Spurs will keep benefitting from playing Josh Primo
With his defensive performance, Primo showed he can bring much more than just flashy offensive possessions, even in limited minutes. Beyond joining Hall of Fame Tracy McGrady and future Hall of Famer Dwight Howard with his blocks, he also tied Evan Mobley and Scottie Barnes for rookie blocks in a game this season. Those two have played 711 and 784 minutes to Primo's 44.
Primo's three steals to pair with his blocks also put him in even rarer company.
"I thought he was excellent for such a young guy starting to learn the NBA," said Coach Popovich after the game. After playing Primo for a season-high 12 minutes in a win last Monday, Coach Pop played his rookie for 18 against Phoenix.
The result was a role in a furious comeback by the Spurs' bench that almost resulted in a win against the team tied for the best record in the league.
With Devin Vassell likely to return to the court soon, we might see Primo reduced back to his regular role of getting spot minutes every few games. After all, he said himself that playing in Austin has been helpful toward his development. But if Lonnie Walker continues to be underwhelming, I wouldn't be surprised to see Primo start to get some of his minutes going forward.
Primo is showing different aspects of being an all-around talent each time he hits the court, and he hasn't even broken 20 minutes in a game yet. The Spurs just might've drafted someone very special.