SAN ANTONIO – The San Antonio Spurs’ three first-round draft picks made their first official community appearance on Wednesday, playing basketball and signing autographs for kids at Morgan’s Wonderland.
Forward Jeremy Sochan and guards Malaki Branham and Blake Wesley all met with children ages 12 to 14 from the Spurs Inclusive Sports League and worked with them on their basketball skills, placing them in drills. The trio also took part in hosting a mini three-on-three tournament at the event. The night included an autograph session, as well as a Q&A opportunity, the team said in a press release.
“Seeing our rookies integrate themselves in the San Antonio community by playing ball and interacting with young athletes in the Spurs Inclusive Sports League, is awesome,” Dr. Kara Allen, chief impact officer for Spurs Sports & Entertainment said. “The Spurs organization is bigger than basketball, and it is through these moments that we create real impact by building leaders and legacies with our young people, our city and our players.”
The Spurs Inclusive Sports League was created in partnership with Spurs Give, Spurs Sports Academy, Morgan’s Wonderland and with guidance from Special Olympics of South Texas. It provides training to athletes of all abilities, while creating an inclusive community where they can play the sport they love, the press release states.
The three rookies are all expected to have big roles on the team this upcoming season as well as moving forward.
Sohan, a native of England and Poland, spent one year at Baylor where he earned Big 12 Sixth Man of the Year and was selected to the Big 12 All-Freshman Team. He was drafted ninth overall in this past year’s NBA draft.
Branham, originally from Akron, Ohio, was the 20th overall selection in the draft. He was named Big Ten Freshman of the Year at Ohio State.
Wesley played one season at Notre Dame, finishing with the fourth-most points (504) by a freshman in program history and received All-ACC Second Team and ACC All-Rookie Team honors in 2022. He was the 25th overall selection in the draft.