After winning Tuesday night’s NBA Draft Lottery, the San Antonio Spurs have seen a surge in the team’s season ticket sales.
David Rumsey of Front Office Sports noted that winning the right to draft superstar prospect Victor Wembanyama immediately made for a busy time for the Spurs ticket office.
“The San Antonio Spurs’ ticket office has been in turbo mode since Tuesday night, when the team won the NBA Draft lottery — and thus the right to select top prospect Victor Wembanyama next month,” Rumsey wrote.
“Many Spurs employees were in the office working past midnight on Tuesday, a team spokesperson told Front Office Sports, and spent all of Wednesday responding to ticket inquiries as quickly as possible.
“By Wednesday afternoon, more than 2,100 season-ticket membership deposits had been placed, and the Spurs anticipated getting to over 2,500 by the end of the day.”
Wembanyama is considered by many basketball observers to be the best draft prospect since LeBron James in 2003. His arrival is expected to provide a huge boost to the Spurs’ rebuilding plans after the franchise endured an uncharacteristically bad year, finishing with a 22-60 record.
That disastrous campaign tied the Spurs for the worst record in the Western Conference. That mark also gave them equal footing with regard to the team’s chances in the lottery with both the Detroit Pistons and Houston Rockets.
Surges in ticket sales are nothing new for a team that manages to emerge with the top pick in the draft. For example, four years ago, the New Orleans Pelicans sold roughly 3,000 season tickets after the team drafted Zion Williamson.
The expected success that those Pelicans fans were hoping for has yet to materialize. The chief reason is Williamson’s string of injuries that have kept him off the court for extended periods of time.
Wembanyama has presumably been on the radar of every NBA team over the past year, considering his blend of size and skills. Standing over seven feet tall, Wembanyama is seen as a player who can immediately turn around the fortunes of a franchise.
The Spurs have something of a history when it comes to being the beneficiaries of having the top overall pick. In 1997, the team was coming off a miserable 20-62 season that was directly related to the absence of David Robinson for virtually the entire season.
That disastrous finish resulted in the team also getting the top pick in the 1997 NBA Draft, which they used on forward Tim Duncan. By the time Duncan retired in 2016, the Spurs had captured five NBA titles.
The Spurs are hoping that a similar situation develops this time around. One question mark about next season is whether long-time head coach Gregg Popovich will return for another campaign.
Prior to the draft lottery, there was speculation that Popovich would return if the Spurs won the right to draft Wembanyama.
Yet, regardless of whether Popovich does return, Wembanyama is joining an organization with plenty of experience in developing players. The team’s fan base appears ready to watch that development in the years ahead.