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19-year-old Frenchman Victor Wembanyama has been regularly regarded as one of the games most consequential prospects since LeBron James in 2003.
Listed at 7ft 5in with an 8ft wingspan, the rookie Wembanyama comes with established size, speed, and skill unlike any other NBA prospect to date.
“My goal is to try and learn as much as possible because I want to win that ring,” said Wembanyama after being drafted to the San Antonio Spurs.
Though cool, calm, and collected throughout his playing career and the international media blitz surrounding his anticipated NBA dominance, Victor let the tears flow when surrounded by his siblings.
Last night I cried tears of joy… What did I do to deserve this
“This is accomplishing something that I have been dreaming of my whole life,” Wembanyama told ESPN.
“Hearing that sentence from Adam Silver, I’ve dreamed of it so much that I have to cry, man.”
French president Emmanuel Macron congratulated Wembanyama on becoming “the first Frenchman to be the first pick in the NBA draft!”
BBC reports Wembanyama played for Boulogne-Levallois Metropolitans 92 in France during the past season and averaged 20.6 points, 10.1 rebounds, 3.0 blocked shots and 2.5 assists in 44 games.
“We’re thrilled that we were able to bring Victor on board,” said San Antonio Spurs coach Gregg Popovich.
“He’s obviously a heck of a talent, a very mature young man. But just like with every draft pick, whether it’s the first pick or the 27th pick, or the 38th pick, we have a responsibility to each and every one to try to create an environment where they can reach the best success possible for them.”
After watching Wembanyama star in an exhibition game in Las Vegas last October, The King proclaimed, “He’s more like an alien, he’s for sure a generational talent,” said NBA scoring leader LeBron James.
“First of all, I’m really glad he said that because I didn’t like to be called a unicorn,” Wembanyama told Sports Illustrated. “I like it because it’s just something not from this world.
Wembanyama concluded, “I like being called an alien, yeah. It’s really what I’m working to be — something unique and original.”