The NBA draft 2023 got underway in New York with San Antonio Spurs picking French phenom Victor Wembanyama as its first pick on Friday.
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Wembanyama, 19, is considered the most coveted draft prospect since LeBron James in 2003.
“This is accomplishing something that I have been dreaming of my whole life,” Wembanyama said on ESPN’s broadcast. “Hearing that sentence from (NBA commissioner) Adam Silver, I’ve dreamed of it so much that I have to cry, man.”
Listed at 7-foot-4, Wembanyama is expected to be an immediate difference-maker in the NBA. He has strong floor play, likes to shoot from outside and is effective in the interior.
Wembanyama averaged 20.6 points, 10.1 rebounds, 3.0 blocked shots and 2.5 assists in 44 games this season for the Boulogne-Levallois Metropolitans 92 this season.
San Antonio earned the right to pick No. 1 by winning last month’s NBA draft lottery.
The Spurs have won five NBA titles under coach Gregg Popovich and have previously hit the No. 1 overall draft pick jackpot twice with the selections of David Robinson (1987) and Tim Duncan (1997).
Both players, along with Popovich, are members of the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.
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