The moment that everyone has been waiting for and the end of the 2023 NBA Draft profiles for Def Pen Sports. Sometimes the word generational gets thrown out far too often, but this draft season Victor Wembanyama may change the definition of the word. The French big man has eye-dropping measurables and talent that made the tanking process this past season a little ugly. The San Antonio Spurs will be taking Wembanyama with the first overall pick this year and it is easy to see why they will. He is being mentioned in the same breath as a prospect with Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Lebron James for a reason. There is no such thing as a sure-fire prospect, but the French big man has more promise than most.
Simply put, Victor Wembanyama’s size jumps off the page when analyzing him and he enough dwarfs centers like Rudy Gobert. The image of the two of them together made the rounds last year with the French prospect clearly taller than the Timberwolves center. Wembanyama is currently listed at an impressive 7’4″. With his height, it is important to remember he will need to weigh more to support his frame and at 230 pounds, his frame overall is somewhat lean at this time. While his size is incredibly impressive it’s his wingspan that makes him a real imposing threat on the basketball court. The unofficial wingspan measurement for Wembanyama is listed at an eye-popping 8’0″. This alone makes the French big man an interesting prospect, but it’s his skill set paired with the stellar size that makes him a generational NBA draft prospect.
With his size, one would expect Wembanyama to be an excellent defender down low, but the prospect is a versatile defender that can stretch his defense out beyond the arc. While he is an excellent rim protector, he can also guard on and off the ball on the perimeter. His defensive instincts may be the best thing about him as an NBA prospect. Blocking shots, disrupting passing lanes, and clamping up players with and without the ball are all skills he shows plenty of promise with. Despite his size, Victor Wembanyama is incredibly quick and has great lateral movement for a big man. Watching him play defense is mesmerizing to watch when he is playing at his best. It is clear he knows exactly how to use his size to his advantage on the court regardless of the matchup he faces. As he adds weight and strength with an NBA training program, his defense should only get better. Experience will help him get better as well and the Spurs know how to nurture defense.
Again with his size, he is expected to be an impactful scorer down low and he is very good down around the rim. What makes him an even more unusual prospect is his ability to score from nearly anywhere on the court. His jump shot is natural, smooth, and when considering his wingspan impossible to block. Despite his size, the French big man can also score off dribble from the mid-range and from beyond the arc. He also shows to be a capable playmaker with satisfactory ball handling and passing ability on the court. While not as polished on the offensive end as he is on the defensive end, he still looks like one of the best offensive players in the past three draft classes. He is a dominating prospect that scores the basketball incredibly efficiently. Give him the right developmental staff and training when he gets to the NBA and Victor Wembanyama will take the league by storm in just a few years.
Discussing weaknesses for Victor Webanyama almost feels like nitpicking. Overall he is about as solid as a prospect can be at this stage in the process. He needs to refine some skills and further develop, but that is the case for every NBA prospect ever. When diving into Wembanyama a bit more he does need to add some strength, but that will come with time and training. The good news is Wembnayama locks in when playing and seems eager to get better on the court.
NBA Comparison: 7’4″ Kevin Durant
Think about what a 7’4″ Kevin Durant would do to the league and feel the terror of all the non-Spurs fans right now. No prospect is a guarantee, but Victor Wembanyama is as close as they come. He is a generational talent with the size, offense, and defense to impact the league in a unique way from day one. The San Antonio Spurs may not be the most entertaining place in the NBA, but their developmental staff is typically on point. The French phenom is heading to the NBA and the other 29 teams will need to brace for impact.