Spurs’ Jeremy Sochan, Devin Vassell get brutal injury update in final stretch of 2023-24

The Spurs will be severely shorthanded to finish the season

Jeremy Sochan and Devin Vassell, with first aid kits. Victor Wembanyama crying. San Antonio Spurs

The San Antonio Spurs are entering their final stretch of games and it looks like they’ll have to finish their campaign without the services of two key players. As of Monday, Devin Vassell and Jeremy Sochan will be sidelined for the rest of the season due to their respective injuries. Vassell suffered a stress reaction in his foot while Sochan will be undergoing ankle surgery, per The Athletic’s Shams Charania.

Both have been mainstays on the Spurs’ starting lineup. This season, Vassell saw action as a starter in 62 out of his 68 games played while Sochan has been on the first unit through 73 games.

Vassell, in particular, is the Spurs’ second-leading scorer. The 23-year-old averages 19.5 points, 4.1 assists and 3.8 rebounds a game. As San Antonio’s number one guard, Vassell is a big reason why the Spurs still managed to carve out a small amount of wins this season. His all-around offensive game has been a threat to opponents and has made him the other half of a dynamic duo that’s comprised of (him and) Spurs rookie Victor Wembanyama.

Sochan, on the other hand, is the Spurs’ blue-collar worker. A forward with a nose for the ball, Sochan’s main contribution on the floor is his defense and hustle.

He’s one of the more interesting figures on the team. With his variously-colored hair and his high-energy style of play, the Polish-American forward has been compared to none other than Dennis Rodman. Sochan’s one-handed free throw has also garnered the attention of many basketball fans. Oh, and the ruffling of feathers too…if there’s one player that isn’t afraid to get under his opponent’s skin, it’s definitely Sochan.

Nevertheless, the on-court contributions are there. This season, the 20-year-old is averaging 11.6 points, 6.4 rebounds and 3.4 assists per game.

The Spurs are prioritizing development and growth

San Antonio, Texas, USA; San Antonio Spurs forward Victor Wembanyama (1) reacts with guard Devin Vassell (24) and forward Jeremy Sochan (10) before a time out during the first half against the Houston Rockets at Frost Bank Center

Scott Wachter-USA TODAY Sports

The Spurs turned heads during the start of the season when Greg Popovich announced that Sochan would be the team’s full-time point guard. Dubbed the Jeremy Sochan experiment, Popovich opted to put the forward in a completely new role to develop the youngster’s ball-handling and playmaking skills, as well as chemistry with Wembanyama.

While the intriguing move ended during the middle of December, the Sochan experiment shows how San Antonio prioritized player development this past season. Sure, they may not have gotten plenty of wins, but their performances during the latter stages of the season show that strides are being made.

Just last week, the Spurs garnered their first three-game winning streak this season with victories over the Phoenix Suns, the Utah Jazz and the New York Knicks. This was no easy feat, considering how the Suns’ trio of Kevin Durant, Devin Booker and Bradley Beal all suited up during their clash on March 25. With Wembanyama sidelined, Jeremy Sochan and Devin Vassell both scored 26 points to lead San Antonio over Phoenix.

Moving over to last Friday’s game against the Eastern Conference’s fourth-seeded Knicks, the Spurs emerged victorious in a 130-126 overtime victory courtesy of a Wembanyama 40-piece.

As the team finishes off the season, more work and rebuilding needs to be done. Regardless, with young players like Vassell and Sochan developing, there’s nowhere to go but up.

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