Victor Wembanyama forces overtime, leads Spurs to first win of season

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Victor Wembanyama made the tying basket with 20 seconds left in regulation, the opening basket in overtime and finished with 21 points and 12 rebounds in his first NBA victory, helping the San Antonio Spurs beat the Houston Rockets 126-122 on Friday night.

Wembanyama had 16 points, eight rebounds and three blocks in the second half and overtime.

Devin Vassell scored 25 points and Keldon Johnson added 20 for the Spurs, who lost to Dallas on Wednesday in Wembanyama’s highly anticipated debut and trailed late in this one before the No. 1 pick helped them pull it out.

Wembanyama’s layup while defended by Jabari Smith Jr. made it 111-111 all and his jumper sent San Antonio to a 6-0 run to begin OT.

Houston center Alperen Sengun scored 25 points, Fred VanVleet added 24 and Jalen Green had 22. The Rockets have dropped their first two games of the season.

The teams tied for the worst record in the Western Conference last season at 22-60, sharing the best lottery odds along with Detroit. The Spurs won it to get the No. 1 pick and Wembanyama, with the Rockets selecting Amen Thompson fourth.

Wembanyama was 7 for 19 from the field, including three resounding dunks. He also had back-to-back blocks on the same possession with two minutes remaining and Houston leading 107-104. Wembanyama met Smith at the rim to block an attempted dunk and then rushed back on the court to block Smith’s floater.

The Spurs bridged the third and fourth quarters on an 8-0 run after falling behind by 10 points. San Antonio committed seven turnovers in the third quarter.

Wembanyama had five points in the opening three minutes after a slow start in his NBA debut.

Wembanyama made his first field goal attempt, an 11-foot fadeaway jumper over Dillon Brooks on the game’s opening possession. After initially missing the 7-foot-3 forward running behind the defense, Johnson lobbed the ball into a crowd and Wembanyama grabbed it and threw it down.

Wembanyama would score only one more point in the first half as he went 2 for 10 from the field.

Reporting by The Associated Press.

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Victor Wembanyama

San Antonio Spurs

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