Las Vegas is a glitzier setting for Victor Wembanyama‘s first game with the Spurs, but the NBA won’t be upset if it happens in Sacramento instead, writes Tim Reynolds of The Associated Press. San Antonio is one of six teams involved in the California Classic Summer League, which will take place during the first week of July — shortly before the Las Vegas showcase that includes all 30 teams.
“All summer leagues are NBA Summer Leagues,” commissioner Adam Silver said. “I’m very supportive of the Sacramento summer league. I remember when (Kings owner Vivek Ranadive) first came to the league and said this was something he wanted to do. I said, ‘As long as you have enough other teams who support it and players who want to play in it, it’s a good thing.’”
Reynolds points out that the Hornets will also be playing in Sacramento, so the top two picks in this year’s draft will be on display.
There’s more draft news to pass along:
- Dereck Lively II could be the second-best shot blocker in the draft outside of Wembanyama, per Christian Clark of NOLA. The Duke center has reportedly been rising up draft boards and could be under consideration for the Pelicans at No. 14. Clark notes that Lively’s skills are still raw and he’s coming off a disappointing season with the Blue Devils, but he points out that New Orleans has a history of gambling on players with size and athleticism.
- Lively is mentioned among the risers in the latest mock draft from Kristen Peek of Yahoo Sports. Joining him are Wembanyama’s teammate, Bilal Coulibaly, and UCLA’s Amari Bailey.
- Ausar Thompson might be a better fit than his brother for the Rockets with the No. 4 pick, according to Jonathan Givony and Jeremy Woo of ESPN. In their latest mock draft, the authors consider team fit as well as talent in projecting the first round. Among the surprises with fit factored in are Gradey Dick going No. 6 to the Magic and Amen Thompson slipping to the Wizards at No. 8.
- Pepperdine’s Maxwell Lewis will hold a workout with the Pelicans this week after already having sessions with the Mavericks and Thunder, who are also in the lottery, tweets Jonathan Wasserman of Bleacher Report. In addition, Lewis has worked out for the Hawks at No. 15, the Lakers at No. 17 and the Rockets at No. 20.
- The Warriors hosted Kansas State’s Keyontae Johnson and Kansas’ Jalen Wilson for a workout on Monday, tweets Adam Zagoria.
- The Wizards are holding a workout on Tuesday with Arkansas’ Ricky Council, Memphis’ Kendric Davis, Marist’s Patrick Gardner, Overtime Elite’s Jazian Gortman, Alabama-Birmingham’s Trey Jemison and Providence’s Noah Locke, the team announced in an email.