Funnies: DelPo in Exho Mode

Looking ahead, DelPo will be playing two exho matches during the off-season and he has one scheduled for March next year at Madison Square Garden.

First, the Tigre exho with Fed (they play two matches) in Argentina takes place on Dec. 12-13.  Then, on Dec. 21, DelPo plays Gonzo in Gonzo’s farewell match to the tour in Chile (there’s an interesting back story to the DelPo-Gonzo match — the linked news article says Gonzo originally sought to play Fed, but Fed’s price of $2M was too high, so DelPo stepped in to play the exho instead).  Even if he is a back-up choice, DelPo is a great opponent for Gonzo’s farewell match, especially since both players won Olympic medals for their South American countries.  And it was emotional.

Recently, a third exho at MSG for the BNP Paribas Showdown in New York was announced.  Vika Azarenka and Serena Williams will play, and DelPo will play the men’s exho against Rafa Nadal.

DelPo, Serena and Vika are in NY for the USO, and they recently took part in a promotional “tour” of the venue:

Photo: @ScottONeil_MSG

Everyone looks normal in this photo.  Everyone except DelPo.  DelPo did say his childhood dream was to be an architect.  Maybe he was envisioning his own version of the Chrysler Building when this photo was taken?  Is that DelPo’s contemplative visionary face?

The photographers were kind enough to include normal DelPo photos as well.  He strikes a model pose in this photo.

Photo: @MSGSportsNYC

The DelPo-Rafa exho should be a fun one, for many reasons.  First, Rafa’s “exho personality” is very polite.  He makes politely funny jokes, while the oldies like Sampras and Agassi are waging passive-aggressive wars in front of an increasingly baffled audience.  During the Rafa/Agassi vs. Fed/Sampras exho in 2010, I remember Fed was talking (almost rambling) during a point, and Agassi interrupted to say, “Dude, what are you going on about?”  For the next few seconds, no one knew how to respond.  When Sampras and Agassi traded verbal barbs with each other, Rafa retreated (quite understandably) into silence.  These are the unscripted moments that make exhos entertaining.

That said, I don’t know what to expect when the DelPo-Rafa exho takes place.  Will DelPo have to take the initiative in making on-court conversation?  In English?  Will they even understand each other’s jokes?

**UPDATE: Here is a video from DelPo, Serena and Vika’s promotional event.  Notice DelPo’s rapid blinking at 1:21, while wearing his hard hat.  Also, he has a dirt smudge on his right shoulder when he’s talking at 1:30.  I like that he high-fives Serena (and gives a slightly less enthusiastic high-five to Vika ;))


About mariposaxprs

I play favorites with Juan Martin Del Potro, Rafael Nadal, Roger Federer, David Ferrer, Feliciano Lopez, Gilles Simon and the long line of mercurial talent that drives me to despair in front of the screen at odd hours during the week.
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9 Responses to Funnies: DelPo in Exho Mode

  1. Rita says:

    Didn’t I see a video where Delpo played his first ATP match against Gonzo in Chile? They come first circle. As for his Plan B to study architecture, didn’t I also see a video where he says he hates mathematics and got nothing out of studying the subject? He’s such a delightful paradox.

    • Candy says:

      😀 You are talking about these, right? (his first match vs Gonzo) & (he doesn’t know about Maths)

      I think it’s not his ATP match, but he’s in his first ATP tournament?!

      I’m always confused too. He doesn’t know Maths, how could he be an architect? Haha. I think he means “designer” more than “architect”. He has no clue. 😛 btw, I think his Plan B is being a footballer. “Architect” is only his Plan C. 🙂

      • mariposaxprs says:

        I love those videos!! That was DelPo’s old coach from Tandil too! DelPo was so silly back then, probably still is now. Also, his eyebrows have definitely changed.

        DelPo most likely wanted to be a “designer architect.” As in, he dresses up in hard hats and carries the rolled up pieces of paper with the building layouts, but somebody else does the maths and all the real work. I remember Monica Seles once said she wanted to be an architect too — during her career, when she was taking time off due to injury, she interned at an architecture firm, but realized it didn’t suit her b/c of all the math involved. They should teach that in school — “architecture involves math.” 🙂

        For now, the Plan B of being a footballer doesn’t look entirely unrealistic. Although I’d much prefer he continue on as El Tenista!!

    • mariposaxprs says:

      Hahahaha, I’d forgotten that part where he dislikes mathematics! He really is a “delightful paradox.” He recently said he wanted Tom Cruise to play him in a movie (completely disregarding the fact that Tom Cruise is a foot shorter than he is). Sometimes, I wonder why no one around him bothers to remind him of these things? 😛

      • Rita says:

        Tom Cruise? I wonder if he saw the video where Nole said he’d cast Delpo as the “scary villain” if he made a movie. Fed of course would play the “handsome hero.” Having seen Delpo in person, he IS scary but then I’m only 5 ft. tall.

        I hope he never gets “programmed” like so many other tenistas and keeps his natural cluelessness. It’s part of his charm.

        Isn’t he too tall for futbol? Seems it would be very easy to tip him over.

        I love the photo, his butt looks just like Andy Roddick’s. How to I share my AR photo I took at Cincy for a side-by-side?

        • mariposaxprs says:

          He’d be a foot taller than I am!! I’m pretty sure I’ve yet to meet anyone who’s an entire foot taller than I am — so DelPo is either the “scary villain” or Tom Cruise? I think I prefer him being a “scary villain” 😀

          I totally get what you mean when you say he has a certain cluelessness about him! He’s certainly a smart cookie, but there’s 2% of him that inhabits a slightly different world. It is very much part of his charm!!

          Ohh, I’d like to see the side by side photos of DelPo & Roddick! Do you have them up on your FB page, by any chance? I should go check right now 🙂

          • Candy says:

            first of all, wanna share some oreos with you. Lol 😛

            yes! That godfather of Tandil Tennis! Have you read recent issue of deuce magazine about Pico? His story & Tandil Tennis story brought tears in my eyes…

            Rita, I think I saw some pics of you on some Delpo’s fanpages on FB. I think it was you who had short hair & wore glasses?! 🙂

            • mariposaxprs says:

              Thank you for the Oreos!! No joke, I’ve been craving Oreos lately and maybe DelPo’s USO campaign will be a good reason to buy Oreo cheesecake this week (is that too much? OK, I’ll stick with just Oreos :))

              Thanks for the tip on Pico’s ATP Deuce article! I just read it right now and it is very touching. I love the parts where Pico and the “Godfather” talk about the state of tennis in Tandil — it’s really amazing that so many players come from that small city, despite the lack of heavy funding. I know it’s not fair to say this, but sometimes I’m grumpy about the amount of dollars spent on Muzz (obviously, Muzz is a worthy investment, but still — considering he hasn’t won a Slam, it’s almost startling, the extent to which Muzz has received every benefit he needs so far — a string of high-profile coaches, expensive physios, image consultants, etc). Then again, I guess Pico & Muzz do have similar backgrounds — growing up w/o too much tennis influence, moving to Spain to train, etc.

              Sorry for going off-topic (lol) but I thought Pico’s ATP profile did a very solid job of letting ppl know more about Pico’s journey to becoming a tennis player.

          • Rita says:

            I’m just uploading a bunch of shots taken with my tall friend’s camera, check my FB in an hour or so for W&SPhotos folder. The A-Rod butt shot is towards the end.
            Yes, Delpo is very intelligent from his interviews where he’s asked substantive questions. His time off in 2010 gave him a chance to step back from tennis and consider the wider world. I wonder if he reads – beyond the sports page as shown in one of your photos – or otherwise continues a self-education program? Wish I could ask him that.

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