Last night, the Miami Heat took on a team from Moscow and won 96-85. But that isn’t the news. LeBron James left in the third quarter, nursing his thigh. But again, that is not the news. The news is the story coming from the Miami Herald after the game. Linda Robertson interviewed two fans at the game from Russia who moved to the United States 5 years ago. These two fans, as you can see above, were decked out and had signs to support their home team. Their names are Pavel and Yuri Kopeche and they are brothers. They were interviewed by a Moscow television station and then interviewed by Robertson. The best part about the entire thing? They are both Americans, are not from Russia and did it as a prank!
Robertson asked them a series of questions about basketball and Russia. They told her that the “NBA is the new vodka in Russia” and that “If you’re wearing a LeBron James shirt or a Knicks or Lakers cap, people know you are Americanized. Of course, Russia is usually about five years behind the United States. Britney Spears is very popular right now.” How do you not realize you are being punked at that point? The two go on to say that they were listening to a Russian rapper by the name of Don Zagru. Zagru, they claimed, was known for satirizing the state of Russian society and wearing LeBron James jerseys.
They were outed of their antics on a message board by their friend in which he wrote:
“The Miami HEAT took on a team from Moscow tonight in a preseason basketball game. A friend of mine I used to work with along with one of his friends who I don’t know decided to go down to the game pretending to be fans of the Russian team. For the record, they are both 100% American and born and raised in South Florida. They painted their faces, wore the teams shirt and pants, wore team colored socks, and brought a sign. They pretended to be brothers from Russia who moved to Miami five years ago and made up the names Pavel and Yuri Kopeche to go by for the night. They spoke with a fake accents and cheered for the Russian team all game long. They were eventually noticed by a Moscow television station and were interviewed by them. After the interview with Moscow television another reporter for the Miami Herald interviewed them and published an article shortly thereafter titled “NBA’s global appeal on display with Moscow team’s visit” Every single thing in that article is a complete lie. Their names, the rapper mentioned doesn’t even exist, every quote was made up on the fly, and the entire article is completely bogus.”
Side note for everyone, Google that rapper, Don Zagru and all you will find is links back to the Miami Herald article. I doubt that article will be up for long, so obviously I got a screen grab!
Check out our interview with Yuri and Pavel