Guys... I think I played against Ronny Turiaf last night. It was like something out of a dream, but I was awake.
(The fact that Ronny got hurt a few days ago makes this slightly less believable, but it's still pretty cool).
I play in a Salvation Army Men's Leauge, and we had a game last night. There was this dude on the other team that looked EXACTLY like Ronny Turiaf!
The only shred of evidence that suggests he wasn't Safari was the fact that he was about 6' 4''. I think the real Safari is listed at 6' 10''. (But the Knicks have always been notorious for falsifying players' dimensions... remember when they tried to tell us that Eddy Curry was under 300 pounds?)
But WAIT! There's MORE!
I wasn't the only one to believe he was Ronny Turiaf. Half the gym was like, "Yo, is that Ronny Turiaf?"
Then the game started, and if there were any doubters left, they quickly saw the light.
Psuedo-Safari did all of the following:
He yelled excitedly at both ends of the floor.
He was very aggressive on defense trying to block everything (I missed an easy put-back because of him).
He was very limited offensively (often passing up wide open 15 footers and kicking the ball back out to a guard).
Every time his team scored, he kind of skipped back down the floor victoriously.
When he went to the bench, he was the biggest cheerleader. I don't actually remember him sitting down.
His family (they all looked like him) were the loudest most passionate fans in the audience. Our "crowd" usually consists of spouses and children, and they're usually pretty tame. But not "The Safaris."
At the end of the game, it was a blowout (we won 71-48), and were just fooling around, trying to throw allyoops and stuff, and give minutes to guys who don't get to play much, and Psuedo-Safari was still jumping on people's backs trying to block everything when... you guessed it... with about two minutes to go, he rolled his ankle.
But he still cheered hard for those last two minutes as he propped his foot up on the bench.
Afterwards, he asked me where the bathroom was. True Story.