What will the Walker Kessler and Victor Wembanyama showdown look like?

Two young centers are about to scare off, but what will the Walker Kessler and Victor Wembanyama matchup look like?
Utah Jazz v San Antonio Spurs
Utah Jazz v San Antonio Spurs / Ronald Cortes/GettyImages

The Utah Jazz and San Antonio Spurs are hours from squaring off, marking the first encounter between the Jazz's promising big Walker Kessler and the Spurs' super prospect, Victor Wembanyama. Kessler, a big with incredible defensive awareness, is among the keys to the Jazz's future, and somebody whose presence has helped bolster the teams' defense every time he touches the court.

Wembanyama on the other hand, is the entire key to the future for the Spurs. His health and consistency will be a huge factor in whether the Spurs can return to the same level of greatness they experienced for most of the last 30 years. And when these two young bigs finally collide, the league will get just a taste of what to expect going forward.

Both men are prone to block shots at an alarming rate. Wembanyama is up to three full blocks a game, while Kessler is at 2.7 and climbing. The young Spurs player is over 10 rebounds per game, with 84 of them coming on defense, while Kessler is at 8.3 with 5.3 coming on defense. Neither man is on a team with an exceedingly great offense, so Kessler out-rebounding Wembanyama on offense is a sign that Kessler has a slightly better feel for the offensive side of the court.

Still, Wembanyama seems to have a better touch around the rim, doubling the amount of points that Kessler puts up, 18.5 to 8.7. That said, Kessler is not the vocal point of the Jazz's offense, as Wembanyama is to the Spurs. The Spurs are seeing their rookie center take the most shots on the team, with 15.9 attempts per game, while Kessler is just taking half of the attempts at 6.7.

And with that, Kessler has maintained a higher rate of success shooting the ball inside the paint, hitting 63.4% of his shots inside the three-point line. Wembanyama is hitting 50.4% of his shots from inside the three-point line. He is shooting more than Kessler, so that is going to affect the efficiency some, but it does appear that Wembanyama is taking more shots he's not as comfortable with as opposed to Kessler, who's sticking to what works (mostly putbacks and lobs).

If the two men do meet tonight, then it will be a very interesting outing, as Wembanyama has not faced anyone like Kessler yet defensively and vice versa.. This could be an ugly, old-school, physical matchup where neither man gets the advantage, or one could dominate the matchup all night. It's really unknown at this point.

Wembanyama, however, is a game-time decision, so it's possible that Kessler doesn't get to measure himself up against Wembanyama just yet.

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