The beginning of the Wembanyama era in San Antonio has not gone as anticipated, with the team starting the season with a record of 3-16 and currently on a 14-game losing streak. While it was understood that adding the French superstar would not guarantee an immediate turnaround, no one expected it to be this bad. Vincent Collet, the coach of the France National Team, believes he knows the reason behind this.
Collet made an appearance on the NBA Extra show, where he shared his thoughts on San Antonio and the rookie's first games in the league. During the interview, he pointed out that Wembanyama must work on improving his shooting percentage and assist his teammates in making plays, among other things.
"What disappoints me a little is his shooting percentage. For me, that's not enough for a player like him. There are various factors at play, including how he's served by his teammates. They should be providing him with more opportunities for easier baskets, which could boost his shooting percentage. Decision-making is crucial, as taking better shots increases the likelihood of making them. Progress is needed in these areas. And then the connection with teammates. Against Sacramento, he took 26 shots and made 0 assists. For me, it's embarrassing."- Collet
On the other hand, Collet praised Wembanyama's consistent performance in his first year, highlighting his ability to make extraordinary plays and his impact on the team's defense. He also mentioned that Wembanyama's presence on the court makes a significant difference in the team's overall performance.
"When he is on the court and when he is not there, the defensive level of the Spurs is not the same. After all, we are always fascinated by his abilities. Every game, there are two or three remarkable plays that shift our perception of the match. Yet, it's on the defensive end where he truly shines, acting as a deterrent that few players can replicate. Comparing him to Holmgren, there is a difference in level between the two."- Collet concluded
The NBA season is a lengthy one, and there are several areas where Popovich's team needs to improve to showcase their true potential. The team needs to identify key players who can contribute significantly towards their goal of competing for the playoffs again in the near future.