Wembanyama suggests team that drafts him needs to win now

Victor Wembanyama, San Antonio Spurs
Victor Wembanyama, San Antonio Spurs / Aurelien Meunier/GettyImages
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It’s no secret that everyone who follows the NBA believes that Victor Wembanyama is the clear-cut first-overall pick in the 2023 Draft and that he is also a unique generational talent in the making. The San Antonio Spurs join several other teams in a race to the bottom to land the best possible odds of drafting him. 

While tanking for talent is a legitimate strategy in the NBA, no team or fan base is excited to lose games on purpose to add a better player. The Spurs are finally biting the bullet this season and going all-in on landing the highest pick possible, but Wembanyama aired his concerns on tanking. 

The 18-year-old sounded off on tanking tactics, calling them “unreasonable” and a “weird strategy.” 

Looking around the league, draft lottery winners seem to be all-in on their talent. The Pelicans and Zion Williamson are winning games, Deandre Ayton and the Suns made a Finals appearance, and Anthony Edward’s Wolves have made the playoffs. Detroit and Cade Cunningham seem to be a lost cause, as they continue to tank even after landing the Oklahoma State standout. This does not seem to be the case for the Spurs if they land Wwembanyama. Or any other team, for that matter. 

The team that lands Wembanyama needs to win immediately

There should be no doubt that Wembanyama is a more complete player than all the recent top picks, aside from maybe Zion, and his unique skillset makes him a desirable prize. However, his recent comments on tanking suggest that he won’t tolerate a tank if he’s on the roster. 

Wemanyama, as an incoming rookie, has virtually no say on what team he suits up for during his first few seasons. But if he’s unhappy, a young Wembanyama would immediately become the most sought-after free agent in the history of the NBA, and teams would line up to offer him as much cash as possible.

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The Spurs have elite wings in Vassell and Johnson, a solid point guard in Tre Jones, and a do-all stopper in Jeremy Sochan, so adding Wembanyama and continuing development would skyrocket this team to the top of the West within two seasons. The Spurs should not be fazed by Wemby’s comments, as they are the best-run franchise in sports and would do right by their potential young star.

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