Wembanyama silences critics with stellar encore performance at Summer League


Victor Wembanyama became the target of social media mockery after a lackluster Summer League debut, with casual viewers rushing to call him a certified bust for his ice-cold shooting performance. Despite getting off on the wrong foot in his first taste of NBA action, the French phenom showed his pedigree on Sunday night, notching 27 points,12 boards, and three blocks on 9-of-14 shooting from the field as the San Antonio Spurs fell short of the Portland Trail Blazers, 85-80.

The number one overall pick of the 2023 NBA Draft looked more comfortable in his second go-round in front of a packed Thomas & Mack Center, getting to his spots within the natural flow of the offense. He drained pick-and-pop jumpers, followed misses for putback slams, outran opponents in transition, and earned 12 free throws. Wembanyama also adjusted his shot selection, forcing the issue less with the ball in his hands while flashing craft as a go-to scorer when the situation arose.

On the other end of the court, the 19-year-old demonstrated why draft experts believe he is a once-in-a-lifetime defensive prospect. Head Coach Matt Nielsen continued using Wembanyama as a wing, asking him to switch screens and match up against perimeter players. His combination of footspeed, length, and fluidity shined as rotated for timely weakside contests, delivered gap help on drivers, and swatted another off-the-dribble three-pointer for the second consecutive game.

With Mike Finger of the San Antonio Express-News reporting the Spurs have shut down their 7-foot-3 centerpiece for the rest of Summer League earlier today, fans will likely have to wait for the preseason to arrive before they see him back on the hardwood again. While this recent update might be a bit of a dissapointment, at least Wembanyama gave us a glimpse into how his immense talent might alter the trajectory of this franchise as he prepares for his highly-anticipated rookie season.

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