It has been a whirlwind of a 48 hours for the newest Spurs rookies. For top overall pick Victor Wembanyama in particular, he was greeted at the airport by a bigger crowd than he could have imagined when he arrived in San Antonio yesterday following the draft, despite his flight arriving two-and-a-half hours late and the sweltering heat. His plane even got a ceremonial water salute from the San Antonio Fire Department as it pulled into the terminal.
Later, Wemby had dinner with Gregg Popovich, Sean Elliott, David Robinson, Tim Duncan and Manu Ginobili and had nothing but glowing things to say about them and the culture they have helped build here in San Antonio.
"Such kind people, and generous."— NBA (@NBA) June 24, 2023
Victor Wembanyama talks about his dinner with Spurs legends David Robinson, Tim Duncan, and Manu Ginobili. pic.twitter.com/uaZ1pVtmyf
After what was presumably a good night’s rest, he and second round pick Sidy Cissoko first arrived at the Arneson River Theater on the River Walk Saturday morning for a “Meet the Rookies” special, which of course was highlighted by Wemby explaining what it was like getting such a warm greeting and what his first breakfast taco order was, while Cissoko showed off his Spanish and admitted he dislikes the Dallas Mavericks, drawing cheers from the audience.
Wembanyama on his initial impression on San Antonio and it’s people: pic.twitter.com/S23fX4xg0g— Noah Magaro-George (@N_Magaro) June 24, 2023
Victor Wembanyama talking about breakfast tacos pic.twitter.com/DadO54hYzK— Bala (@BalaPattySZN) June 24, 2023
Sidy Cissoko speaking fluent Spanish on the stage?— Noah Magaro-George (@N_Magaro) June 24, 2023
This kid is gonna fit in just fine in San Antonio with the Spurs. pic.twitter.com/R8xsZQpY9p
Cissoko already buttering up Spurs fans with this cheeky comment on the Mavericks: pic.twitter.com/lXe3d8cEiT— Noah Magaro-George (@N_Magaro) June 24, 2023
(I was personally thrilled to hear Wemby say he ordered bean and cheese tacos on his first try. Since moving to Houston, I have learned they are very much a San Antonio staple and have not found many places that have them here. Even vendors who bring bundles of breakfast tacos to my floor at work never have bean and cheese, and I’ve actually gotten some strange looks when asking about them.)
Next was their official press conferences at the AT&T Center, which was attended by a few familiar faces including Jeremy Sochan, Keldon Johnson and Sandro Mamukelashvili. (And for anyone wondering, Mamu was asked about his future with the Spurs, and while said he hopes to return, the contract situation is still up in the air.)
Jeremy Sochan, Keldon Johnson and Sandro Mamukelashvili were hanging out after the rookies’ press conferences taking pictures with Spurs employees and their kids. pic.twitter.com/Gljk1USQoh— Matthew Tynan (@Matthew_Tynan) June 24, 2023
The press conference itself included a lot of the same questions for both players, just in a more professional setting, followed by their first photoshoot in Spurs uniforms. You can watch the two events in their entirety below.
First one that’s not photoshopped pic.twitter.com/AjnMi3y1YK— San Antonio Spurs (@spurs) June 24, 2023
And finally, if you really want to get hyped while and simultaneously having something stuck in your head for the rest of the day (and likely beyond), check out the latest tune for the Spurs mariachi band: