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Victor Wembanyama’s debut for the Spurs might come during the NBA Summer League in Sacramento – Basketball Insiders



Ever since San Antonio won the Draft Lottery, fans from all over can’t wait to see the French sensation Victor Wembanyama land in the United States and start his fairy tale story in the NBA. It appears that if everything comes through as it is expected to, the rising star’s debut might come this July as the Spurs will appear in the NBA Summer League in Sacramento.

As the 19-year-old has been named the No. 1 pick for the upcoming NBA Draft this June 22, it is expected that he will be the Texan franchise’s pick. The team is among six others who will participate at the California Classic, which is one of the smaller summer competitions.

Even though Wembanyama sometimes wished he would stay and be tested a bit longer in Europe before crossing the Atlantic Ocean, he believes he’s made the right decision. “There was a little regret leaving the EuroLeague but in hindsight, there was no reason for that.

“As a competitor, I would have liked to taste a little more of European competition but I had to make a choice and I made the best choice,” he said.

Why are we so sure he will end up participating in the California Classic? The Charlotte Hornets, who hold the No. 2 draft pick, will also be appearing in that summer tournament, and will actually have their opening match against San Antonio.

“This event is the perfect kick-off to the NBA Summer League, giving fans the opportunity to watch the next generation of basketball talent and enjoy a world-class entertainment experience,” Kings owner Vivek Ranadivé declared.

The competition in Sacramento will begin on July 3, as Spurs and Hornets face off, while Miami will clash against the Lakers and Warriors will look for playoff revenge against the hosting Kings. As for the NBA Summer League in Las Vegas, it will start on July 7.

His current coach Vincent Collet dedicated a word of advice for his future trainer, most probably legend Gregg Popovich

The Metropolitans 92’s trainer, Vincent Collet, was one of the first to welcome the lottery results, as he always considered the Spurs franchise to be the best option.

“It was the choice I was hoping for. San Antonio is a franchise that has built its legend with foreign players. We saw that in France with the prism of Tony Parker but there was also Manu Ginobili and others. I think Gregg Popovich can be the best mentor for him,” the coach said.

Check out Wembanyama’s latest performance as he led his team to victory in Game 1 of the French Finals:

Collet, who also trains the French national team, went on to describe why it is important to give Wembanyama his freedom on court. “There are obvious things in his qualities like measurements, motor skills, etc. Then there is his project, his own will, his independency,” he said.

The versatile center, who can also play as a guard, hopes to anticipate the evolution of the modern sport, as he tries to mature his best assets and rejecting to limit his potential to a box.“Coaches always have this little pressure to win games even at younger ages and want to play it safe,” Wembanyama explained.

“So they would say ‘Victor don’t do that” and it’s mental, it’s unconscious. For me that would be the biggest mistake, to put myself in a box’.”

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Khris Middleton on Giannis’ Bucks comments: ‘We want him back’




Khris Middleton would be ecstatic to see Giannis Antetokounmpo remain in a Milwaukee Bucks uniform for the foreseeable future. However, the two-time MVP is also serious about winning another championship. Antetokounmpo, 28, made that point clear in recent interviews.

“I think it’s kind of business as usual either way,” Middleton told ESPN’s Tim Bontemps in a phone interview. “It doesn’t affect me personally. I don’t think it affects us as a team. I think this is something he said almost every year he’s come up in contract extension talks.”

According to a few NBA betting sites, the Milwaukee Bucks hold fourth-shortest odds to win next season’s championship in 2024. Check out which sportsbooks are showing better odds for the Boston Celtics, Denver Nuggets, and Phoenix Suns.

“We always want him back for sure. Let’s be for sure and let everyone know that,” Khris Middleton added. “We want this guy to come back because he’s one of the best players in the world. He’s one of the best players in franchise history.

“So when he says things like that, I think he just wants to challenge the team, the organization, to keep putting us in position to win championships. … I think it’s just something that he just wants to keep putting pressure on everybody. And that’s himself also.”

Khris Middleton says the Milwaukee Bucks would welcome Giannis Antetokounmpo back with open arms, hopes the Greek star will sign an extension soon

In December 2020, Giannis Antetokounmpo signed a five-year, $228.2 million contract extension with Milwaukee. His multi-year deal includes a 15% trade kicker. He earned $42.49 million last season and is slated to make $45.64 million in 2023-24.

The seven-time All-Star becomes eligible for a three-year, $173 million extension this Friday. The Greek Freak has spent his entire 10-year career with the Bucks. If he declines his 2024-25 player option, he’ll become a free agent next summer.

“He’s not just pointing a finger at everybody else saying, ‘You guys have to do this for me.’ I think he’s putting that pressure on himself to be better, to come in and be great every year,” Middleton mentioned. “So there’s no pressure on — there’s no added pressure when he says that to us as a team, or me as a person, that I have to be better.”

Last season, Antetokounmpo appeared in 63 games with the Bucks, averaging a career-high 31.1 points, 11.8 rebounds, and 5.7 assists per game while shooting 55.3% from the field.

In Milwaukee’s 123-113 victory over the Washington Wizards on Jan. 3, 2023, the forward scored a career-high 55 points in 37 minutes of action. He finished 20-of-33 (60.6%) shooting from the floor and 15-of-16 (93.8%) at the foul line.

The five-time All-Defensive member was the only player in 2022-23 to be named unanimous All-NBA First Team. He also became the first player over the last 50 years to receive this honor by a unanimous vote in five straight seasons.

Khris Middleton and the rest of Milwaukee would miss Antetokounmpo, if he were to ever leave. In 2021, the Bucks won their first NBA title in 50 years. Without the Greek star, the Bucks would no longer be a title contender.

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Spurs waive undrafted guard Javante McCoy, now have 20 players




The San Antonio Spurs are waiving guard Javante McCoy less than a week after signing him to an Exhibit 10 contract, per sources. McCoy, 25, went undrafted out of Boston University in 2022. Although the 6-foot-5 guard signed a deal with the Los Angeles Lakers over the summertime, he was waived last October.

On Nov. 3, 2022, McCoy was named to the opening night roster for the South Bay Lakers, Los Angeles’ G League affiliate. In 25 appearances with South Bay last season, McCoy averaged 14.2 points, 3.8 rebounds, 3.6 assists, and 25.9 minutes per game.

Referring to a couple of NBA betting sites, the San Antonio Spurs hold 19th-ranked odds to win next season’s 2024 championship. Sportsbooks are showing better odds for the New Orleans Pelicans, Oklahoma City Thunder, and Minnesota Timberwolves.

As for his college career, McCoy made 138 starts in 147 games across five seasons (2017-22) with Boston University. He averaged 13.1 points, 3.3 rebounds, 2.6 assists, and 30.2 minutes per game.

In 35 starts of his fifth season, the guard averaged career highs of 17.4 points, 1.1 steals, and 34 minutes per game while shooting a career-best 49.5% from the floor. McCoy was named to the first-team All-Patriot League.

San Antonio Spurs waive undrafted guard Javante McCoy; the Boston University product could receive a bonus worth between $5,000 to $75,000 by joining the Austin Spurs

Furthermore, in Boston’s 85-80 loss to Navy on March 6, 2022, he recorded a career-high-tying 30 points, five boards, four assists, and one steal in 44 minutes as a starter. Not to mention, the guard finished 12-of-24 (50%) shooting from the field and drained four 3-pointers.

An Exhibit 10 contract can be converted into a two-way deal before the regular season begins. However, now that McCoy has been waived, he will be eligible to receive a bonus worth between $5,000 to $75,000 by joining the Austin Spurs and spending at least 60 days with the G League team.

Moreover, forward Dominick Barlow and guard Sir’ Jabari Rice occupy two of the San Antonio Spurs’ three two-way slots. Each NBA team can now sign a maximum of three two-way players, per the new CBA.

Exhibit 10 contracts are non-guaranteed, allowing teams to waive the signee without taking a cap hit. Additionally, the Spurs now have 20 players under contract, leaving one open spot on their 21-man offseason roster.

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Jamahl Mosley describes how Dirk Nowitzki mentored rookie Luka Doncic




Back in 2014, Jamahl Mosley was appointed as an assistant coach with the Mavericks and stayed with the team for seven years until he accepted the head coaching job with the Orlando Magic in 2021. As a part of Rick Carlisle’s staff, he witnessed legend Dirk Nowtizki’s final campaign just as young Luka Doncic was in his rookie season in Dallas.

In a recent interview on the “HoopsHype” podcast, Mosely talked about many subjets, but most interesting was his take on coaching the Slovenian during his first year with the Texan franchise.

According to the team’s former assistant coach, Nowitzki had a very powerful influence over Doncic, assuming a mentorship role at the end of his Hall of Fame career. Jamahl assured that the rising star was like a sponge around the German, and saw him learn from one of the greatest basketball players of all time.

“When he came to Dallas, Dirk Nowitzki mentored him and the way he worked. He showed him what he did inside and out how he did things,” he said of their dynamic. “Luka observes everything, not just on the court, but how you conduct yourself off the court and carry yourself.”

Luka was only 20 years of age when he signed for the Mavericks, after winning the 2018 Euroleague trophy with Real Madrid and earned the tournament’s MVP. Mosley couldn’t help but be in awe of the point guard’s natural understanding of the sport, especially as a playmaker.

“The first time you saw it was in pickup games. We had runs in the summer. Luka came in after winning it all overseas,” he recalled. “He was tired because he was playing nonstop, but he picked up right where he left off. Some of his passes he made you’re seeing now, but it’s always been his natural instinct.”

We’ve always known that Dirk and Luka are very close, just as the Mavs’ Hall of Famer decided to follow his Slovenian friend’s steps during the most recent FIBA World Cup.

“Well, you know, I saw Luka’s also in Japan, so I’m going to see [him] when I go to [the] group [stages] to see Germany play. I’m going to see Luka for sure. He was obviously playing for the Mavericks and one of my favorite players, and so [I] can’t wait to see him and of course so many stars,” Nowitzki said last month.

Mosley describes Doncic as an ‘artist’, and says that his love for the basketball game was contagious for the rest of the team

During the interview, the current Magic coach recalled how inspiring young Luka was due to his joy to play basketball everyday and be around his teammates. Mosley specifically used the word “artist” to describe his abbilities with the ball.

“He loves to play the game and loves being around his teammates. There’s a joy he plays with,” Mosley said of Doncic. “That stood out more than anything. The talent level, he sees things other people can’t see. He’s always creating the game. He’s an artist in that way. He helps other guys be better.”

In the video above, check out some of the best plays between Doncic and Nowitzki during their only campaign sharing the Dallas jersey together.

It is also known that the Slovenian superstar always shared great respect for Mosley, and supported his decision back when he decided to accept the head coaching job in Florida two years ago.

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