Victor Wembanyama guides Spurs to victory over Raptors

(Toronto) When young Victor Wembanyama was introduced to the 19,800 spectators during warm-ups at Scotiabank Arena, he received a warm welcome. The Frenchman thanked the crowd for a memorable evening.

Wembanyama scored a hat-trick to guide the San Antonio Spurs to a 122-99 victory over the Toronto Raptors on Monday night.

The first overall pick in the most recent NBA draft had 27 points, 14 rebounds and 10 blocks for the Spurs (11-43), who ended a seven-game losing streak. Wembanyama also had five assists to come close to a rare quadruple.

“I had it in the back of my mind, yes, but I was playing for the victory first,” he said.

There have only been four quadruples in NBA history. Spurs legend David Robinson was the last player to achieve the feat, in 1994.

Only eight rookies, including Wembanyama, have ever made 10 blocks in a single game. He said that the more the season progresses, the more difficult it is for him to accumulate blocks.

“I had to make an extra effort tonight because fewer and fewer players are coming my way,” he said. There is an intimidation factor, I see it on the pitch. »

Devin Vassell had 25 points for the Spurs, including five three-pointers, and added six assists.

Rookie Gradey Dick, who was selected 12 picks after Wembanyama, was the best offensively for the Raptors (19-35) with 18 points.

Center Kelly Olynyk scored 17 points as a substitute while his Canadian compatriot RJ Barrett finished the game with 13 points and five rebounds for the Torontonians.

“I feel like the biggest piece of advice the veterans gave me when I got here is that there are going to be ups and downs throughout the season. You have to enjoy the highs, but learn from the lows, Dick said. It’s definitely one of our lows, the way we came out. It’s a learning process. »

The Toronto team struggled with their shots while the Spurs had success over long distances.

The Raptors made just 39.8% of their shots from the floor, including 25.8% of their three-pointers. The Spurs shot 52.9% from the floor, including 36.7% from the perimeter.

Wembanyama made an immediate impact on Monday when he blocked Jakob Poeltl’s attempted shot. He then made a three-point basket on the Spurs’ first possession before grabbing a rebound on the next defensively.

Raptors head coach Darko Rajakovic said his men didn’t get off to a good start.

“It was a lack of effort, intensity and concentration. From the start of the match, observed Rajakovic. There were way too many turnovers that led to easy points. »


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