European basketball phenom Victor Wembanyama became the youngest MVP in the French league’s All-Star Game as hype around the 7-foot-4 ‘once in a generation player’ continues to grow
French teen prodigy Victor Wembanyama enhanced his fast-growing reputation when he became the youngest MVP in the French league’s All-Star game.
The 18-year-old Wembanyama finished with 27 points, 12 rebounds and four assists on Thursday night as the All-Star France team won 136-128 over the All-Star World team – an annual contest between French and non-French players in the LNB of the French league.
The 7-foot-3 Wembanyama is considered the likely top pick in next June’s 2023 NBA draft and a near-certain first top-five draft pick from France.
In the two months since his underwhelming performances in two exhibition games in Las Vegas, “Wembamania” has swept France with sold-out games every time he plays for the Paris-based Metropolitans 92.
French phenom Victor Wembanyama won his home league’s All-Star Game MVP award
With a game-changing talent like his, the NBA is actively warning its franchises against ‘tanking’ to improve their chances of drafting the French star.
Before the start of the season, NBA commissioner Adam Silver decided to put the league on ‘notice’, and said he would ‘give particular attention’ to any teams that bid their season for his services.
The NBA Draft uses a lottery system to decide who gets the first overall pick – rather than gifting it to the team that finishes the season with the worst record.
At the time of publication, the Pistons are the worst team in the NBA, followed by the Hornets, Rockets, Spurs, and Magic.
Wembanyama averaged 22.9 points and 9.6 rebounds a game – all before he turned 19
Wembanyama leads the French league with an average of 22.9 points and 9.6 rebounds per game. And those are his final numbers as an 18-year-old. He will be 19 in Jan. 4, 2023.
He hit a purple patch from early November to early December with a streak of four consecutive 30-or-more-point games.
Wembanyama’s international career got off to a good start and he went 2-0 with Olympic silver medalist France, scoring 39 points and 13 rebounds in those two games.
France play Lithuania and the Czech Republic in February.
He is believed to be the 1st pick in the NBA Draft – with the Pistons leading the race to the bottom.