SAN ANTONIO — At a hastily assembled press conference at the team’s practice facility late Thursday night, San Antonio Spurs Head Coach Gregg Popovich announced his intention to leave the NBA and run for president of the United States.
“Vicissitudes are necessary and imminent,” Popovich began. “And I alone can facilitate,” he continued.
A huge campaign banner with the words “Make America Nasty Again,” fell into place behind him as he finished his opening statement. Six bald eagles were released and began circling high above.
Only a handful of local Spurs bloggers and a few of the players were around for the presser. The lateness of the occasion prevented professional reporters such as sports radio host Geoff Sheen, who was passed out at an Applebee’s bar, and the Express News’ Jeff McDonald, who was destroying a New York pizza pie and feeling terrible pangs of guilt about it, from attending. Needless to say, the young bloggers were completely unprepared for the bombshell that Popovich dropped on them.
Popovich, as is his style, stared silently at the basement dwellers who found themselves in a political vortex that none were accustomed to, but each would have to face. Who among them would rise to the level of Cronkite or Murrow; to Woodward or Thomas?
One scruffy guy in sweats and a flannel shirt began. “Can you talk about your plans to protect America?” he asked, shakily.
“No,” was Popovich’s response.
Emboldened, a blogger who runs a site called I Wanna Live in Kawhi Leonard’s Hands spoke up next. “Can you talk about how you’ll improve the economy?”
“Wine,” Popovich replied. “We’ll do it with vineyards and wine. Vineyards everywhere. We will sell and consume lots of wine.”
The bloggers nodded in agreement. The eagles circled lower. Boban Marjanovic stepped from behind the MANA banner and began to peculiarly strum a guitar that looked like a ukulele in his giant, grey hands. It was a weird scene.
Popovich continued. “My platform is simple. Don’t do stupid things. We’ll work hard and then we’ll have a nice meal at night. It’s easy, really. There’s no need to make things more difficult. No one will be famous and we’ll all get plenty of rest. You’ll have to make sacrifices that you wouldn’t make in other countries. You’re not going to be a superstar here. You’re going to buy into the system and we’re going to function as one cohesive unit. Good to great; corporate knowledge; I wanna cut Manu one minute and then make him breakfast the next.”
Spurs Communications Director Tom James handed out a series of binders containing policy proposals to the bloggers. He then stood silently and glared at them, as if transmitting some sort of unspoken instruction. They dutifully began tweeting out the different positions held by candidate Popovich. The tweets and breaking news were quickly picked up by ESPN, who promptly claimed the extraordinary news as their own. Upon checking his phone, Stephen A. Jackson headed to the airport to fly to San Antonio in hopes of landing the first interview with the new presidential candidate.
“As for the press,” Popovich continued, “we’ll have one press conference prior to the beginning of year three in my administration. You’ll only get two questions. Choose your words wisely,” he said.
An eagle swooped in and grabbed Matt Bonner’s pet ferret with his powerful talons, which previously had free reign of the facility. Matt began to sob. A new day was coming.
While the pack of eagles feasted on Bonner’s ferret, Popovich concluded his speech. “Vicissitudes are coming. Begin your preparations now. I need each of you with me to spread the word.” He stepped from behind the dais as Boban plaintively played his guitar/ukulele. The young bloggers in the room felt a sense of duty to relay every second of the event to ESPN, so that ESPN could tell the world. And they were also filled with hope. Hope that a President Popovich could rehabilitate a broken country and restore decency to a political process that had been squandered away.
Popovich disappeared behind the banner and makeshift curtain that had been set up for the event. He was gone just as quickly as he had entered, carrying with him the hopes of a weary nation and even wearier bloggers. The Spurs’ loss would be the world’s gain, and his burden would be a heavy one to carry. But the gravity of the situation called for it, and thankfully, Gregg Popovich was willing to answer.
In the moments that passed after his departure, the bloggers remained silent. They too realized the grandness that lay before them. They too realized the importance in their newfound roles. It would be up to them to describe for ESPN the qualifications that Popovich possesses, and then ESPN could share Pop’s vision with the world. Aware of their charge, the bloggers began to slowly disassemble in hopes of a few moments of rest before the new day dawned. On the way out the door, some pulled up their phones. “What does vicissitude mean?” each typed into his search engine.