Paolo Banchero disses Victor Wembanyama in praising Bol Bol

Paolo Banchero talked about Bol Bol reminding people that the OG Victor Wembanyama might already be playing in the NBA.

“Everyone talks about the Victor dude from France.”

Paolo Banchero talked to HoopsHype recently and discussed Bol Bol’s growing candidacy to earn this season’s Most Improved Player of the Year award.

When asked about his teammate’s skill set, Banchero said that he was “not trying to compare them” and couldn’t help but point out that “Bol’s 7-foot-2, shoots 3s, brings it up the court, makes passes, and blocks shots.”

“I feel like people kind of forget about him, but Bol’s a freak of nature.”

Banchero, who himself is vying for another award in the Rookie of the Year race through the first quarter of the season, is not the first one to discuss Bol in advance of up-and-coming, generational talent Victor Wembanyama’s arrival in the USA next summer with the inevitable no. 1 draft pick attached to his name.

In a story written on Tuesday by Damian Burchardt of The Ringer, Bol Bol’s exploits on the basketball court are detailed, including his ascension to the forefront of the NBA’s big-man field, and the fulfillment of his vast potential.

“Is Bol Bol the original Victor Wembanyama?” That’s how sports outlet Clutch Points started a recent story echoing the sentiment of Magic Twitter when it comes to Bol Bol and what he’s doing this season. The examples are multiple and they come from an early-November game between Orlando and Sacramento in which Magic fans had plenty of plays to highlight Bol’s “Walmart Victor Wembanyama” skills (h/t Clutch Points).

Banchero himself added that he doesn’t think “any of us have been surprised by him,” before making it clear that “from the first day I got on the court with him in the summer, it was obvious (that Bol would succeed in the NBA)”.

“He’s ultra-talented at 7-foot-2, can shoot pull-up 3s, and block shots all around the court. He moves like a 6-foot-5 shooting guard. It’s crazy.”

Bol Bol is having an extraordinarily unique campaign in the 2022 NBA season

Just over a week ago, Josh Wilson wrote about Bol Bol here at FanSided. Although he noted that “it took a few years” for Bol to finally get things right, “something seems to have clicked with Bol Bol this year.”

Attempting to compare Bol to über-prospect Wembanyama, Wilson wrote that “Bol Bol walked so Wembanyama could run,” after warning readers that “we should appreciate this season Bol Bol is putting up without considering it just an appetizer to Wembanyama.”

Bol is one of only four players in the NBA averaging two-plus blocks per game while hitting more than 0.5 3-point shots per game (he’s actually averaging 0.9 3-point makes per game through games played Monday).

Bol’s skill set is more than unique, and not even the return of Paolo Banchero last Friday stopped Bol from getting one more gig in the starting lineup — his 14th in a row getting all the way back to Oct. 28. He’s now started 16 consecutive games and that won’t change any time soon. In fact, he’s coming off getting a season-high 39 minutes of playing time last Monday at Brooklyn.

On the season, Bol is averaging 13+ points, 8+ rebounds, and 2 blocks in 27 minutes per game. That’s something only Anthony Davis and Myles Turner are doing… but playing 34 and 29 minutes per game, respectively,  in comparison.

Bol is one of this season’s early Most Improved Player award favorites, with Vegas odds pegging him as the sixth-leading candidate to earn the accolade when all is said and done.