Wembymania grows in San Antonio ahead of NBA Draft night

The NBA Draft will air on KSAT 12 (ABC) from 7 to 10 p.m.

SAN ANTONIO – The NBA Draft is upon us on Thursday night, and Wembymania is growing!

The San Antonio Spurs won the draft lottery on May 16, sending the city into a supportive frenzy after years of losing seasons. It’s all thanks to the opportunity of drafting French phenom Victor Wembanyama.

“When the Spurs are doing good, the city is doing well. The morale is crazy lifted when the Spurs are killing it,” said Colton Valentine, a San Antonio muralist.

The overall feeling of the city isn’t just up, but so are tributes to the Wembanyama, including the mural Colton Valentine is spraypainting on the side of Southtown 101.

“I have so many emotions,” said Valentine.

The tributes come in all shapes and forms, like an 18-by-18-foot cutout of Wemby at South Antonio Builders, located at 1001 Roosevelt.

Co-owner Robert Alvarado said Wembanyama’s anticipated arrival is giving the city life.

“(I was a) season ticket holder for many years and bought again this year because they got Wemby,” said Alvarado.

And the Spurs’ likely draft pick isn’t just filling seats at the AT&T Center but also driving business back up.

“(We’re) trying to do interesting things to get people to come back, so Wembanyama is just the icing on the cake,” said Jody Bailey Newman, owner of the Friendly Spot.

The NBA Draft countdown begins at 6:30 p.m. on Thursday. If you’re going to watch, tune in early as the Spurs pick first!

You can watch the draft on KSAT 12 starting at 7 p.m. when the draft kicks off.

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About the Authors:

John Paul Barajas is a reporter at KSAT 12. Previously, he worked at KRGV 5 in the Rio Grande Valley. He has a degree from the University of Houston. In his free time, he likes to get a workout in, spend time on the water and check out good eats and drinks.

Gavin Nesbitt is a photojournalist and video editor who joined KSAT in September 2021. He has traveled across the great state of Texas to film, conduct interviews and edit many major news stories, including the White Settlement church shooting, Hurricane Hanna, 2020 presidential campaigns, Texas border coverage and the Spurs.