Gregg Popovich sets the record straight about Victor Wenbanyama’s Summer League status

Spurs, Gregg Popovich, NBA Draft (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)
Spurs, Gregg Popovich, NBA Draft (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images) /

Whether or not Victor Wenbanyama will play in Summer League has been a topic of debate. His new coach Gregg Popovich answered the question for good.

Victor Wenbanyama, as of Thursday night, is a San Antonio Spur. While we’ve known in principle for months that the Spurs would select Wenbanyama with the first overall pick in the NBA Draft, tonight made it official.

The uncertainty with Wenbanyama has been less about what team he’ll end up on — he was a convincing enough talent to be a near-lock at first overall — but instead over whether he would participate in Summer League. Summer League in Vegas is typically a time used for rookies and younger players to get some extra needed run time to develop their skills and, in some cases, earn their roster spot.

Wenbanyama will have his roster spot, so the only upside to him playing is getting in the rhythm with some of his teammates and coaches. The tension, though, is Wenbanyama’s grueling season just ended with Mets 92 in France.

Though he knew he had his career in the NBA secured, Wenbanyama opted to play out his full season with the French team.

Gregg Popovich announces Victor Wenbanyama’s Summer League status

There were rumors on either side of the coin. Some said Wenbanyama was almost certain to not play. Others said he might.

Gregg Popovich, Spurs head coach, has more authority than all of those rumors, and he just set it straight: He’ll be a participant.

Pop leaves this open-ended enough that it wouldn’t be a shock if Wemby didn’t actually play. “Participate” could mean sitting in street clothes on the bench, just being present with the team.

Keep in mind, there’s a formal preseason before the regular season that will surely be more useful for Wenbanyama, who has already proven everything he needs to.

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