French NT coach says Victor Wembanyama should improve in shooting percentage, decision-making, and facilitating plays for his teammates: "Against Sacramento, he took 26 shots and made 0 assists. For me, it's embarrassing (smile)."

Credit: Imago images, Alonzo Adams-USA TODAY Sports – Scanpix
Credit Imago images, Alonzo Adams-USA TODAY Sports – Scanpix

French national team head coach Vincent Collet recently appeared on the NBA Extra show, offering insights into the performance of San Antonio Spurs rising star Victor Wembanyama during his rookie season.

Victor Wembanyama

Victor  Wembanyama
Team: San Antonio Spurs
Position: C
Age: 19
Height: 224 cm
Weight: 104 kg
Birth place: France

Collet acknowledged the challenges faced by Wemby's team, but he delved into the statistical aspects of the young player's game, shedding light on both his impressive achievements and areas that need improvement.

"Eight defeats in a row. It's not him alone, it's his team. We need to put it into perspective; it's the beginning of the season. Beyond that, he's averaging nearly 20 points and close to 10 rebounds. From a statistical point of view, it's still consistent for a first year," Collet said on NBA Extra, via L'Equipe.

"Afterwards, when we know Victor well and we know the expectations around him, he must continue to rise. What disappoints me a little is his shooting percentage. For me, that's not enough for a player like him," he underlined. "There are various factors at play, including how he's served by his teammates. They should be providing him with more opportunities for easier baskets, which could boost his shooting percentage.

"I was looking at LeBron James, who is at 58%, and Kevin Durant -- who also shoots a lot from a distance -- is at 52%. There is really room for improvement for him. I believe it will balance out. Decision-making is crucial, as taking better shots increases the likelihood of making them. Progress is needed in these areas."

The French coach also highlighted the need for Wembanyama to progress in aspects like facilitating plays for his teammates.

"And then the connection with teammates. Against Sacramento, he took 26 shots and made 0 assists. For me, it's embarrassing," Collet said with a smile. "But you also have to be patient, the NBA season only started four weeks ago. […]

"Moving beyond the offensive stats, his impact on defense is evident," the 60-year-old continued. "When he is on the court and when he is not there, the defensive level of the Spurs is not the same. This was already the case at the Metropolitans 92 at the start of the season last year. His domination was often noticed more on the defensive side than on the offensive end.

"After all, we are always fascinated by his abilities. Every game, there are two or three remarkable plays that shift our perception of the match. Yet, it's on the defensive end where he truly shines, acting as a deterrent that few players can replicate. Comparing him to [Chet] Holmgren, there is a difference in level between the two," Collet concluded.

Wembanyama averages 19.3 points (42.9% FG, 28.4% 3PT), 9.5 rebounds, 2.4 assists, and 2.6 blocks over 13 games this season.

San Antonio has lost eight straight games and now ranks at the bottom of the Western Conference standings with a 3-10 record.

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Victor Wembanyama

Victor  Wembanyama
Victor  Wembanyama
MIN: 30.13
PTS: 19.31 (49.82%)
REB: 9.54
As: 2.38
ST: 1
BL: 2.62
TO: 3.77
GM: 13