Some of the greatest mysteries in NBA history are the real measurements of the game’s most iconic players. LeBron James’ weight has been a point of speculation for two decades as his frame fluctuated throughout his career. Kevin Durant is listed at 6’10, but tells fellow players he’s shorter and women he’s taller. Lying about your size in the NBA is as much part of the game as the crossover dribble and the fadeaway jumper.
Victor Wembanyama would have been part of this lineage. The No. 1 overall pick in the 2023 NBA Draft is the most hyped prospect to enter the league since LeBron James, in part because he’s so damn tall. Wembanyama was listed at 7’2 by his team in France, but we have been calling him 7’5 because that was supposedly what he measured at in shoes. Wembanyama’s actual height could have been the NBA’s next great mystery, but his introduction with the San Antonio Spurs busted out the tape measure and gave us a real number.
Wembanyama measured at 7’3.5 barefoot, according to the San Antonio News-Express:
But on the day of his introductory press conference at the AT&T Center on Saturday, Wembanyama took off his shoes, straightened his back, stood still, and allowed his new employers to take a true scientific accounting of the distance between the top of his scalp and the soles of his feet.
The exact number, per a Spurs official?
Seven feet, three-and-one-half inches.
Most players gain between 1-2 inches of height when they measure in shoes according to data from the NBA Draft combine. Since basketball is played in shoes, I’m not going to stop calling him 7’5.
By the way, here’s a list of NBA players sorted by height. Boban Marjanovic is the tallest at 7’4, but is that a barefoot measurement? Please allow me to continue calling Wemby the tallest player in the NBA.