It didn’t take long, but the good guys delivered an overtime thriller two games into this young season. The Rockets are also on the same rebuilding path, so it was a good win versus a group of similarly young, talented players.
Devin Vassell led the team and tied a game-high 25 points while Victor Wembanyama notched his first career double-double with 21 points and 12 rebounds. Keldon Johnson poured in 20 points as Tre Jones and Zach Collins played nice and shared the rock with each player recording 8 assists apiece.
All aboard the hype train!
Victor Wembanyama puts on a SHOW and secures his first career NBA win in an OT thriller!— NBA (@NBA) October 28, 2023
2 STL pic.twitter.com/a0cYk5lPmj
If you stuck through the last few seasons of lean wins and robust rebuilding (Tank? What tank? The only tanks I know are Tank Dell and Tank Bigsby, but this isn’t a fantasy football blog!), welcome!
If you dipped out when Kawhi Leonard was traded to the land of Letterkenny (highly recommended show), welcome! We are inclusive fans, but you should bring everyone tacos since you’ve been gone so long.
Either way, strap in because the only way to watch this iteration of the Spurs is unending optimism, unrealistic expectations, and a dollop of irrational confidence.
All hype aside, it shouldn’t be overlooked that Devin Vassell might end up being the team’s leading scorer this season. By all accounts, this would be the year that Vassell can take that next step by putting it all together on both ends of the floor.
Zach Collins is a player that might not get as much shine as season progresses, but his importance this squad will be key. Collins manning the center position will allow Wembanyama to play where he’s most comfortable as well as save him minutes from banging down low with bigger (not taller, but bigger) players.
If Collins continues to rack up assists like he did on Friday night, then his presence adds a bit of versaility to the Spurs’ offense.
Wembanyama and Jeremy Sochan went up for the same lob, and Wembanyama snatched it first and threw down the dunk. You love to see the effort from both players, but it was also nice to see WembanDrama (we’re workshopping everything here, even callbacks to HBO’s “Entourage.”) be a little selfish and exert himself for the bucket.
You know when you played NBA Jam and if you had a heavy thumb that kept pressing the dunk/jump button, which made the player you controlled keep jumping up and down in one place frantically in berserker mode? That’s basically how Keldon Johnson plays basketball in real life, and I love everything about it.
It should be a really fun season headlined by Johnson, Vassell, and Wembanyama.
Jeremy Sochan effortlessly dunked through the mass gathering of defenders, reminding us it’s going to be all tricks and a treat watching the hyper smooth sophomore continue to develop this season.
The crisp ball movement highlighted by another Zach Collins assist was the cherry on top [chef’s kiss].
Wembanyama’s footwork and body control is impressive. While he is young and seems raw, his fundamentals provide a solid foundation. Playing professionally overseas for the last several years on a team custom-made and specifically created just to train him to be in the number one overall pick helps too, I’m sure.
I’d pay good money to see a Cedi Osman and Jeremy Sochan buddy cop TV show where Osman plays the wild card maverick officer and Sochan is the by-the-book officer who’s just too old for this stuff.
But until then, more of this give and go action is muy nice.
Oh my alley oop. Wembanyama probably could have cleared this perfect pass at the hoop without leaving his feet, but he jumped a little bit to confirm we aren’t in the Matrix and that none of this is a simulation. Give me more of those blue pills if it means seeing more of these plays.
Aaand that’s all folks! Have a great weekend, tip your servers, neuter and spay your pets, say three Wembanyama slamma jammas before you go to bed—au revoir!
If you missed this captivating game or you want to keep mainlining the best parts, here are the full-game highlights:
Next up, the Spurs head out west to take on the Los Angeles Clippers on Sunday, October 29, 2023.