Victor Wembanyama announced he is taking time off from interviews and media coverage for the rest of the NBA offseason. The 19-year-old French basketball player became the No. 1 overall pick in the 2023 NBA draft at the end of June. He joined the San Antonio Spurs and has since made his NBA debut during the Summer League games over the weekend.
“In the past month, I think basketball wasn’t even 50% of my schedule. I can’t stand it. I know it’s a special moment in my life, but I’m glad it’s over … I just wanna hoop,” he said in a press conference on Monday.
“In the past month, I think basketball wasn’t even 50% of my schedule. I can’t stand it. I know it’s a special moment in my life, but I’m glad it’s over. I just wanna hoop.”
Victor Wembanyama on the media tour and being able to focus on basketball now.
— ClutchPoints (@ClutchPointsApp) July 10, 2023
Wembanyama’s announcement also comes a week after an encounter between his security detail and Britney Spears. The singer said she was slapped by Wembanyama’s team after tapping the player.
Wembanyama’s security guard took “his left hand to push Britney’s hand away from the individual. [He] used enough force when pushing Britney’s hand away that it caused her hand to hit her face, causing her sunglasses to fall off,” according to a police report obtained by PEOPLE.
The investigation has since concluded, and law enforcement noted, “No charges will be filed against the person involved.”
Wembanyama addressed the incident while speaking to reporters.
“I saw the news, obviously,” he said. “I woke up to a couple of phone calls. Something did happen a little bit when I was walking with some security of the team to some restaurant. We were in a hall, and there was a lot of people, so people were calling me, obviously.”
According to sports journalist Justin Russo, Wembanyama said that he will “disappear from the media” over the offseason, possibly to take a vacation and enjoy life away from the sport before the NBA season begins in October.
Victor Wembanyama said that he’s probably going to “disappear from the media” for the next few months during the offseason in order to enjoy a vacation and life away from basketball before it kicks off again.
— Justin Russo (@FlyByKnite) July 10, 2023
Wembanyama is regarded as one of basketball’s most promising rising figures. He received advice from fellow French players, such as Tony Parker, Nicolas Batum and Rudy Gobert.
“The advice that comes up the most is just to stay myself,” he shared. “Everything is gonna go well as long as I stay true to myself.”