New Spurs player and first Frenchman selected as number 1 in the Draft, Wemby gives his impressions at a press conference.
His feelings after being selected number 1 in the Draft : “It’s hard to put into words, it’s still fresh… It’s the best thing that ever happened to me in my life, it’s the best night of my life. I’ve dreamed about it for so long… It’s a dream come true, it’s unbelievable.»
The five-minute wait, between San Antonio picking and Adam Silver’s announcement : “The longest five minutes of my life! That’s when I started to get emotional, my family went silent, everyone was looking at me, I got cold, I felteclipsea few moments later… Many people congratulated me. I saw Adam Silver, I thanked him again, I hugged him. Afterwards, someone gave me this (he shows the San Antonio jersey flocked to his name, with the number 1, editor’s note). Obviously, someone knew how it was going to happen (smile). I received a lot of love.»
The last hours before the Draft : “This is where it started to look real.»
Popovich? He’s not intimidating yet, but I’m sure he will be when I see him in real life (smile).
Words from Gregg Popovich and San Antonio executives : “It was very simple actually. I had phone calls. They just told me they were looking forward to working with me. They wanted to reure me, encourage me because I was going to start the play-offs (with Boulogne-Levallois). Popovich? He’s not intimidating yet, but I’m sure he will be when I see him in real life (smile).»
The message to San Antonio fans : “I will give 100%, do everything in my power to allow this franchise to win, to have an impact on the fans and the community.»
Spurs and the legacy of the French, Tony Parker, Boris Diaw : “It is much more than a logo and a (club) name. It is one of the favorite franchises of the French. There is a legacy with very great French players, and generally very great players in fact and very great “big men”.»
The words of Tony Parker and Boris Diaw : “They didn’t really talk to me directly about the NBA because there was a very important season to play. They did, however, talk to me more about how to prepare for the NBA. We didn’t know I was going to Spurs for so long, so we didn’t get a chance to talk about San Antonio.»
His ambitions for his first season : “Some players have done everything to win the title during their career without ever succeeding. I don’t want to be part of it. My goal will be to get closer and closer to the (champion) ring and learn how to get there.»
His earliest memories of Spurs on TV : “Final matches, in 2013, 2014. These are my most distant memories.»
You know, when we are going to have a baby, we know it nine months in advance (laughs)! There, it’s a bit the same.
No surprise but full of emotion : “Even if it was expected… You know, when you’re going to have a baby, you know it nine months in advance (laughs)! There, it’s a bit the same.And me, I’m still moved because it’s mythical, it’s legendary, the sentence that Adam Silver utters… It’s something I dreamed of. I could almost touch it.»
Popovich who says that it will not be necessary to burn the stages : “It makes sense because it’s very easy to make mistakes. I’m happy to have people around me to help me not to do them.»
Tim Duncan : “If I have the opportunity to work with him… I can’t think of a better role model.»
The umption of learning Spanish, knowing that many Spurs fans are Spanish-speaking : “I thought about it… But I’ve been very busy since the lottery (smile). But it will happen at some point or another.»
His debut with the Spurs : “I can’t wait to wear the San Antonio jersey for the first time and to start such a great adventure. You never know what can happen and that’s what’s so exciting.»
The next days : “I have to go to several places in the United States, but tomorrow (this Friday) it will be San Antonio. We’ll have to get used to it, I’m going to have to meet a lot of people. I know more or less where I have to go, but the program is a bit overnight, it can change all the time.»
A Tony Parker fan, that’s for sure. So yeah, I guess that made me a Spurs fan too.
If he was a Spurs fan growing up : “A Tony Parker fan, that’s for sure. So yeah, I guess that made me a Spurs fan too. I’m happy, I feel so much love coming to me from Spurs supporters since the lottery. I believe there are murals in San Antonio…Couldn’t have asked for a better onewelcome. I love these fans.»
The return of tall players to the top of the NBA : “The game has indeed changed in recent years. It makes sense. You have to have a combination of several factors and the best have recently been big names from Europe or elsewhere. The road will be long for me before reaching the heights but I am ready to learn. (…) I don’t know if kids who are over seven feet have much to learn from me, they can learn much more by digging deep inside themselves. The most important thing is to know yourself.»
Statements taken at a press conference