Spurs' Victor Wembanyama lost to the Lakers on 5×5 night

LOS ANGELES — Sitting on stage in front of a San Antonio Spurs banner, Victor Wembayama fielded questions and talked about his stat line Friday night against the Los Angeles Lakers.

Vembanyama joins Jamaal Tinsley (2001) as the only NBA rookie to complete a 5×5 game — record at least 5 points, 5 rebounds, 5 assists, 5 steals and 5 blocks in a game — and become only the second player to do so. Teamed with Michael Jordan for 5 blocks and 5 steals in consecutive games.

Vembanyama paused to consider Jordan's feat and asked, “I wonder if he did it in victory.”

Jordan, in his third season doing it, actually did it in wins. Vembaniyama did it at a loss. Wembanayama's Spurs lost 113-108 to the Lakers on Friday night.

Vembanyama finished with 27 points, 10 rebounds, 8 assists, 5 steals and 5 blocks, becoming the 15th player in NBA history to record 5×5 and the first since Jusuf Nurkic in 2019.

He fell just one assist short of the feat Thursday night in Sacramento. Since blocks were recorded as an official statistic in 1973-74, Wembaniyama became the first player in NBA history to average 5×5 over a two-game span.

Vembanyama played 31 minutes, the fewest in a 5×5 game, and at 20, became the youngest player to reach the statistical mark. He became the second player with 25 points, 10 rebounds, five assists, five blocks and five steals, tying Hakeem Olajuwon with four.

But these achievements don't mean much to Vembanyama, he said, until they win.

See also  How UAW strikes could affect auto shoppers: NPR

“For me, it's secondary,” Wembaniama said. “Hopefully for the future, I think it was a good performance, but as it stands today, I can't be satisfied with a loss.”

The Lakers' superstar duo of LeBron James and Anthony Davis were too much for the young Spurs to handle. James had 30 points, 9 assists and 7 rebounds, while Davis had 28 points and 13 rebounds.

“Of course it was challenging [going against] One of the best duos in the league,” Vembanyama said. “But still, if we play this way, I think we'll beat a lot of teams.

“But I think in the end it was maturing because we all make mistakes every time. Little mistakes, missed a layup, turned the ball over. We went down, we went down again. , down seven multiples, that's when we made a mistake. So yeah , which is maturity.”

Following the game, James had nothing but praise for Wembanyama.

“He has no ceiling,” James said. “He can do whatever he wants in his career. He seems to enjoy the game, he seems to put in the work. From the outside, I don't have a day-to-day with him. Basically, but I said a long time ago how special he is, and that's Really simple.

“Up to destruction until your question [defensively]There are guys in our league that you have to account for at any point in the history of our league whether you're around the rim or the perimeter, and he sits at the top of that, [if not] Around the top, with all the adults.”

When asked about some of the best rookies he's seen, James mentioned players like Zion Williamson, Luka Doncic and Kyrie Irving.

See also  Logan Webb of the Giants was runner-up for the award - NBC Sports Bay Area & California

“He's one of those guys who had like a stellar freshman season,” James said. “Guys who came in [dominated]. But can you afford it? We've had guys come in and it's been really bad [good]. I think the one thing Wembey has over all the guys I've named is you see his length.

“You see how tall he is and his length. This guy next to me,” James said, pointing to Davis, “is a lot taller, and he's taller than AD. So that's a little different.”

Friday's loss dropped the Spurs to 11-46 on the season. It was their 10th defeat in 11 games.

But Wembaniyama's teammates know that frequent losses won't last forever because of how much of a difference-maker the rookie is and can be.

“I think it shows how special he is,” Spurs guard Devin Vassell told ESPN. “Certainly we know what we're building around. We know what we have, and as I talked about yesterday, it's tough. You sit here and compete day and night, day in and day out, and you're not winning.

“It's obviously tough. We're always going to be with him. He wants to be the best, and we appreciate that, and I think we want to be the best, not just him, but all of us.”

ESPN's Dave McMenamin contributed to this report.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *