Duke won it’s 12th straight game tonight, beating Maryland 77-65, to the evident delight of ESPN’s ace ACC broadcasting team: a palpably inebriated Mike Patrick and an as-excruciating-as-ever Dick Vitale. But while Vitale deserves to be commended on his quick return to embarrassing form after throat surgery — and whichever ESPN director chose to cut to a shot of Vitale’s wife and grandkids decked out in Duke gear on the sidelines deserves credit for a solid moment of silent protest — viewers could be forgiven for forgetting that there was another team on the floor.
That happens during Duke games, but while it’s a shame in part because it leads to more Coach K worship than any decent person can take, it was a shame in this instance because Maryland’s leading scorer, and the game’s most interesting player, is the flamboyant, bizarre and increasingly effective Greivis Vasquez (above). And he’s worth talking about, if only for a moment here, in CSTB’s patented cut-and-paste format. Seriously, there’s a patent.
Vazquez just missed a triple-double in last Saturday’s Terps win over N.C. State (he had 13 points, 15 assists and 9 boards), and put up 25 points, 8 rebounds, and 7 assists tonight, in a losing effort. He’s prone to mistakes on the court, but as a recent profile by Dan Steinberg at the Washington Post‘s DC Sports Bog reveals, Vasquez takes his jiggy-ness very seriously.
“Greivis is fly, man,” Boom Osby said. “We call him ‘Mr. GQ.’ He’s like the Tom Brady of our team. That’s who he is. He dates competitive cheerleaders and softball players. He’s just something else. Did you see what he had on today, the Diesels and the jeans and the button-up? He’s fly, man. He’s a pretty boy. He’s something else.”
So he has a particular style, yes? Can it be described?
“You never know,” James Gist said. “Some days Greivis will come in in just sweats, another day Greivis will come in with an Eskimo hat. You just never know what you’re gonna get with him.”
“Eskimo hat” being James Gist-speak for a winter hat with furry ear flaps, which is a fine look for a chilly day like today. Well, and the curious facial hair, right? Eskimo hats are fine, but they hardly to compare to the shaving of random, non-symmetrical hieroglypics into one’s face, do they? What were those strange markings, anyhow?
“Oh, that Caracas gang sign stuff?” Osby recalled. “No, I’m kidding. I don’t know what that was man. I thought it was all right….What’d you call it, James, when Greivis had that stuff Z’d in his face?”
“I don’t know what the hell that was,” Gist said…
“I liked it,” (Jerome) Burney told me. “Actually, he’s got a moped, that’s where he got the design from. It had the lightning strikes.”
A moped, huh?
“Greivis actually does have a moped, he has one, and he loves riding around,” Dave Neal said. “He doesn’t abide the laws or anything, he just kind of drives around and goes crazy.”
At which point I wasn’t sure whether I should be more interested in the fact that Greivis rides a moped around campus–crazily, and in Montrose Christian colors, no less–or that his facial hair may have been influenced by said moped’s design. Greivis, what say you?
“It’s not mine, somebody [loaned it to] me,” Vasquez said of the moped. “Sometimes I drive it and then people think it’s mine but it’s not. The moped got lines all up and down and stuff and then people be like that was [the designs], but it’s not why.”
Ok. So, um, why?
“That was like some style my barber used to do, images and lines,” he said. “I thought it was cool.”
As usual, Brendan Flynn provided the link.