Anyone who has been watching the Spurs for the last couple of seasons knows the potential of Devin Vassell, but now that he has just signed the largest contract in franchise history, he will have a lot more eyes on him. (Also because more outsides will be watching the Spurs in general thanks to a certain rookie.) As a result, he was included in Zach Lowe's annual list of top X-factors / most-intriguing-players. Here’s what he had to say:
It’s already easy to picture Vassell fitting into a Victor Wembanyama-centered team as an elite 3-and-D player. The intrigue lies in how good Vassell can get at the core skills of that role, and whether he can stretch the boundaries of it — becoming the 3-and-D type who can work as a secondary ball handler in playoff-level games.
The “D” part of the Vassell 3-and-D equation has lagged behind expectations — typical of young players with ambitions of scoring. Vassell is slithery, with a 6-10 wingspan, and has the look of someone who can switch from point guards to power forwards. In some matchups, he can. But bigger wings have bullied him some. Vassell’s attention to detail can wane. He’s a so-so rebounder.
But the tools are there. Vassell has also put on weight — he said he’s up to 205 pounds — with an eye on becoming a more versatile defender.
He should get there. If the right parts of his game pop, Vassell could be a core starter on the next great San Antonio team.
Considering the expanded offensive game he’s already shown, I would say Vassell has already proven he is more than a 3-and-D player, but regardless, there’s little doubt he will either be the Spurs’ second-best player at worst this season, so naturally it will be intriguing to see if he puts it all together on both sides of the ball. If he does, the sky is the limit.
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