Q&A with Villanova's Donte DiVincenzo: Basketball talk with Popovich, bench role & more

Donte DiVincenzo

The San Antonio Spurs will have the No. 18 pick in the 2018 NBA Draft and if Villanova's Donte DiVincenzo is on the board, it wouldn't come to a surprise to hear NBA Commissioner Adam Silver announce his name.

DiVincenzo became a household name with his performance in the NCAA Final Four tournament, leading Villanova with 31 points in a 79-62 victory over Michigan, giving Villanova its third National Championship in school history.

After that night, his draft stock went through the roof and he is projected to go in the first round and could fall to the Spurs.

In New York City's Grand Central Terminal, the NBA hosted the media-only 2018 Draft event where I got a chance to talk one-on-one with Donte about his recent meeting with the Spurs.

Jeff: Did you ever meet up with San Antonio?

Donte: Yeah, I actually just met with the Spurs last week.

Jeff: What can you tell me about the meeting? I bet it went really well.

Donte: They (Spurs) really like me.

They're looking at a bunch of guys in that position (swing guard), obviously, but they think my ability to come off the bench is valuable.

To be able to play different positions to be able to initiate the offense. They're getting older guys - Manu (Ginobili) and Tony (Parker) - they're towards the end of their careers and they want young guys there that are similar to them. Not necessarily now but have the potential to be similar to them.

(Donte had a fantastic combine performance. He had a combine leading standing (34.5“) and max (42.0“) vertical leap. He had a top 10 three-quarter sprint at the combine. He has a 6‘4.5” with a 6’6” wingspan.)

Jeff: Who did you meet with? It was a great meeting overall I'm betting.

Donte: It was awesome! It was awesome! I met with Coach Pop. I was thrilled to meet with him, talk with him. He's a great guy. We talked basketball. We just sat there and talked basketball for a lot longer than I expected.

In his final season in college, Donte averaged 13.4 points, 3.5 assists, and 4.8 rebounds in 29.3 minutes. He shot 40-percent from the 3-point line but was a bit on the low side from the charity stripe at 71-percent.

His athleticism is off the charts but needs to tighten up his defensive skills.


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