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NBA: for Adam Silver, Victor Wembanyama has the "potential" to be at the level of "the greatest"


The commissioner was widely questioned about the “Wemby” case this Wednesday, on the eve of the NBA match in Paris and a few months before the 2023 Draft, in June.

Victor Wembanyama is not yet in the NBA that his name is already on everyone's lips across the Atlantic.


In the NBA, everyone is talking about him, he's the next attraction

," confirms Killian Hayes, chosen in seventh position in the 2020 Draft, a record for a Frenchman.

Record which will fall at the end of June, “Wemby” being promised in the first place.


Victor Wembanyama is about to join our League, which is very exciting for us

," said Adam Silver on Wednesday in Paris, in a long preamble before answering questions from journalists


I heard he should attend the game tomorrow (Chicago-Detroit Thursday on the boards of the Accor Arena, editor's note).

I haven't met him yet but I can't wait to at least say hello.

“He is not the only one, Magic Johnson, who will be at Bercy on Thursday, nurturing the same ambition according to the words of the NBA commissioner!

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And the big boss of the North American league to continue: “

I can't wait to just be able to say hello to him tomorrow.

From what I know, he's not just a great basketball player, a great athlete, but also a good young man, very intelligent, very committed.

I hope I will have the opportunity to tell him to take one day at a time.

It's a cliché, but it's also true.

From what I've seen, I'm very impressed that he knows he has to work on his body, his game, mature as a player.

Even the best players in their thirties would tell you that they work on a new aspect of their game every summer, that they improve all the time.

This is the recipe of the greatest.

within the NBA, with the elders serving as mentors to the youngsters.

There are times when I get jealous of the promotion/relegation system.

Adam Silver

Obviously, Adam Silver, "


", refused to give a preference about the team that will have the chance to welcome the 19-year-old French phenomenon in the coming months.


If I had an opinion, I wouldn't give it to you

", he smiles, adding that he has "

no preference

" since he "

loves all (his) teams


To see if some clubs will launch headlong into a tanking operation intended to put the hook on the Mets player.

Understand, on purpose to lose the most matches in order to draw the highest in the Draft.


It's not part of the Commissioner's vocabulary

, "smiles Mr. Silver, recalling that the NBA"

is careful

to this kind of phenomenon and recalling that various modifications have been made to avoid this.


There are times when I get jealous of the promotion/relegation system

," he jokes, saying he's "

pretty happy with the way things are

" about it.

Read alsoNBA: Adam Silver confirms (almost) a regular season game in Paris in 2024

Moreover, as Adam Silver points out, the best have not always been selected in the first row, from Nikola Jokic to Giannis Antetokounmpo, via Stephen Curry and of course Michael Jordan, the examples he cited.

We could also have thought of Tony Parker, selected in the 28th position in 2001. “

I don't know who will be the first choice of the Draft.

Besides, we are only in mid-January.

The Draft will take place at the end of June.

A lot of things can happen between now and then

, "he slips, ensuring that he wants"

be careful with this young man because as talented as he is, he has not yet stepped on the NBA floors, he has not even been drafted yet and he is already seen as a great.

It had been the same for LeBron, who effectively became one of the greatest in history.

Victor has the potential to be at this level

,” said the 60-year-old US leader.

The NBA is counting on the “Wemby” effect

In terms of impact, the wave could be huge in France and other markets.

The “Wembymania” should quickly break out.

Adam Silver rubs his hands in advance… “

Let's not put too much pressure on him before he's even an NBA player.

But if it follows the same path as in other markets, it will be a big attraction in France, no doubt

, he acknowledges


And French fans will not be the only ones who want to follow him.

I think of Yao Ming.

It was a big attraction in China, and even more outside!

Fans love great players.

We will follow him in France, in Europe.

He has African origins.

One can imagine connections with this continent.


Read also“Historic market”, social networks … How the NBA fell in love with France

In the meantime, it is under the colors of Boulogne-Levallois that Victor Wembanyama will play again this Wednesday evening, on the side of Marseille, against Fos-sur-Mer, for a match of the 18th day of the French championship.

A match… to follow on the NBA application, like all the meetings of the French unicorn with the Metropolitans 92. A privilege reserved for Wembanyama alone, a first in the history of the NBA.

That's what makes the sport so interesting: you have to try to predict the future, which no one can do

,” says Silver.

That of "Wemby" is already mapped out.

Source: lefigaro

All sports articles on 2023-01-18

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