Rick Reilly, millionaire columnist and America's foremost purveyor of narcissistic Twitter claims and bad golf jokes, looks to be writing a story on Aaron Craft and [watered-down-Reilly-metaphor-for-Craft's-annoying-people-skills].
How do we know this? Reilly took over the Ohio State player availability portion of Wednesday's press conference ahead of the Buckeyes' Sweet 16 game with Arizona, asking 40% of the event's questions, all with a "Really, how annoying are you, Aaron?" flavor.
His first volley is direct.
Rick Reilly: Do you find – could you see how someone might see you as annoying.
Aaron Craft: I think he's asking you, Deshaun.
Brilliant, young sir Aaron. But, Reilly wasn't deterred.
Reilly: I mean, not just basketball, but any time. Can you see how in basketball you might be annoying or in real life? Anything like that?
Craft: I know there's probably a couple of people you could talk to back home that would say I'm pretty annoying outside of the basketball floor. The way I play, I hope that's the way I'm kind of viewed. That's what I try to do to other people and I know in practice when Shannon does it to me, I think he's annoying as well. It helps – anything I can do to make them think about other things than their game plan or anything like that. They can think as badly as they want about me as long as they're not thinking about what they should be doing.
Again, Craft parries like a master.
After a question, you know, on the actual game from another reporter, Reilly tries to get Craft to compare himself to Michael Jordan.
Reilly: The jumper you made against Iowa State and the way you finished it – was that homage to Michael Jordan?
Craft: I don't think I'm nearly close enough to be put in the same category as him. I know that if I wouldn't have made it, Deshaun would have been angry at me for not throwing him the ball, so it gave it that extra oomph to go in.
Striking out, Reilly then tries to enlist Deshaun Thomas for help.
Reilly: Deshaun, could you describe how Aaron could be annoying.
Craft: Be calm, baby.
Deshaun Thomas: I don't see how he could be annoying, really, because he doesn't guard me in practice. He's on my team, so I like to see him get into people's heads and for other people to think he's annoying. So, I don't think he's annoying because he's on my squad and he's out there on the ball 90% of the time, so I like it.
Reilly: Could you see him annoying others?
Thomas: Yeah, I can see him frustrating other point guards a little bit because a lot of point guards like to force things – especially scoring point guards trying to get their shots off. Aaron is so into them, I think point guards see that and I see it, too.
Thomas sticks to the talking points like a pro. What are Thomas' talking points? "THIS GUYS IS A DEFENSIVE MACHINE AND HE IS MY TEAMMATE. OF COURSE I DON'T FIND HIM ANNOYING."
Finally, Reilly takes the social media angle.
Reilly: Just for laughs, do you ever go on Twitter or blogs and chat rooms to see what they're saying about you and if so, what do you enjoy?
Craft: I actually don't have Twitter, so I like to avoid all of that. It's either way too good or way too bad, so you don't need to read either of them. Some guys bring up some things every now and again from Twitter and show me the ones that are funny. There was a Chuck Norris one the other day from a former teammate but other than that-
Reilly: What was it?
Craft: I believe it said that I would kick Chuck Norris' butt and then he'd shave his head to look more like me. And I thought that was pretty funny. I thought it was pretty good. It gave me a good laugh.
Craft doesn't even have Twitter. But he does have a Chuck Norris joke.
Good luck, Rick.