The No. 1 overall pick in the 2019 NBA 2K League Draft - Spencer "Ria" Wyman - is expected to burst on the scene in the 2020 NBA 2K League season and prove why Jazz Gaming made him their first pick.
No longer a rookie, Wyman is set to build on his rookie campaign starting in Game 1 of the Jazz Gaming's regular-season opener against Magic Gaming.
"I think we'll see a much more mature Ria on the court. Team first mindset," head coach Jelani Mitchell said. "That's something that we're really expecting from him."
The Jazz Gaming center had an impressive rookie debut in 2019. In 16 regular-season games played, he averaged 15.7 points per game and 10.3 rebounds per game. He also led Jazz Gaming in scoring last year and ranked first in the NBA 2K League in blocks per game (1.8).
Not bad for the Shoreline, Washington native.
"We're looking (for him) to go in and dominate and just be himself there," Mitchell said.
Being the No. 1 overall pick does come with higher expectations. It naturally comes with the territory.
But growth, understanding and skill development goes a long way for Wyman. Something Mitchell is eyeing from the second-year pro.
"This year he's definitely more comfortable, definitely has matured as he's been with us," Mitchell said.
Last season, Jazz Gaming finished 8-8 with no playoff berth. Obviously, the playoffs and beyond is the goal for Jazz Gaming this season but Wyman will have to take on a significant role to lead the team for this goal to become a reality.
"Ria is going to be real on the court," Mitchell said. "As we saw last year at the start of the year, his numbers may have been a little bit low because he was sacrificing a bit. He was on the sharp build this year. You'll mostly see him on a build that he wants to be on this kind of a center game."
Being the proverbial "franchise guy" isn't what Wyman chases. Winning, titles and bringing glory to Jazz Gaming is first and foremost.
"Although he's number one, I can tell you that straight up that the thought of being the face of the franchise doesn't cross his mind one bit. He just wants to go out and be himself," Mitchell said. "He just wants to go out, dominate his individual match up, help his teammates."
Said Mitchell: "He just told me that he's raring to go."
The team will boast veterans to surround Wyman this season such as Brentathan Aasgaard, and Shaka Browne. Together, they'll be looking to start the 2020 season on the right virtual foot. If so, then the team could see a deep postseason run at the franchise's first NBA 2K League title.
"You guys are going to see great things from Ria this year," Mitchell said. "My expectation for him to just go out and be himself, be the Ria I know he can be."
San Antonio Spurs fans can watch all NBA 2K League games including tonight's Jazz Gaming-Magic Gaming matchup at 9 p.m. EST on the ESPN App, Twitch and YouTube.