An interception, a furious dunk, two successful three-point shots in a row and a few rebounds swallowed in a handful of minutes. The revolt led by Victor Wembanyama at the very end of the match will ultimately have remained in vain. For their last match in 2022, the Metropolitans 92 suffered the law of Strasbourg (84-81), Monday evening, in an advanced match of the 15th day of Betclic Élite. A bad grade to end the year and a reunion with a bitter taste for Vincent Collet who coached the SIG between 2011 and January 2020.
If December 26 is a public holiday in Alsace, the people of Strasbourg have caught a big fish. With this success, the 6th in 7 days, they confirm their renewed form and can still hope to qualify for the Leaders Cup which will bring together, in mid-February in Saint-Chamond (Loire), the eight best teams of the first leg.
The Mets, who remained them on two successes and had the possibility of temporarily seizing the top of the standings while waiting for the match of the leader Monaco in Fos-sur-Mer on Tuesday, suffered a severe setback. Blame it on a failed start to the match and waking up too late. Three days after overthrowing Cholet at the end of an incredible scenario (80-59 then 92-87), they failed to repeat the same happy ending. Lacking rhythm, perhaps tired from the efforts after their duel against Cholet, and awkward for three quarters, Lahaou Konaté’s partners ran after the score from the 2nd quarter (40-27, 17th).
Led by 14 lengths a few minutes from the buzzer (74-58, 35th), the Mets then began to let go, to free themselves and to believe in it. Long clumsy at 3 points (0 out of 6 at that time), Wembanyama scored his first two winning shots of the evening in quick succession and revived the hopes of his people. On alternating current, Wemby, whose duel at high altitude with the Frenchman Bodian Massa, 2.08 m, kept his promises, lived two matches in one. In difficulty for three quarters, the native of Chesnay ended up taking the measure of his opponent and was one of the architects, with Konaté and Besson in particular, of the revolt of the Mets. But the awakening will have been too late to reverse the situation (84-81).
With 26 points (with a perfect 12 of 12 on free throws but a low 6 of 18 on shots), 18 rebounds (his record), 2 assists, 3 steals and 3 blocks, Wembanyama once again demonstrated the full extent of his talent. This is the ninth time in the last ten days that he has finished as his team’s top scorer and rebounder.
The holidays will wait a little longer for the one who is announced in first place in the next NBA Draft. Before enjoying a few days of well-deserved rest, he will take part in the traditional All Star Game on Thursday evening at the Accor Arena in Paris. A first for him since, injured just before, he had to forfeit the last edition a year ago. The Mets giant will notably find his teammates Hugo Besson and Tremont Waters, as well as his coach Vincent Collet.
But it is indeed Victor Wembanyama who will be the big attraction of the evening of stars. The approximately 15,000 spectators will even be entitled to a double dose of “Wemby” because the new star will play with the French team and compete in the 3-point shooter competition. See you Thursday evening.
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Betclic Elite: despite Wembanyama’s 26 points and 18 rebounds, the Mets fall in Strasbourg
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