Yeah, yeah. I know Nick Kyrgios is a terrible guy. He’s the most hated player in the sport right now. He’s toxic. He’s a horse’s ass. He’s all those things, and you’d be right to say all those things and more.
What he did the other night during his match against Stan Wawrinka, telling the crowd and TV audience that Thanasi Kokkinakis was banging Stan’s alleged girlfriend, Donna Vekic, was unacceptable and reprehensible. And he deserves the widespread backlash and outrage that he’s been getting.
But, honestly, I think this whole thing is overblown. Here’s why:
1) Why did Kyrgios say those words?
We all saw the video, heard him say it and he admitted to it. But why did he do it? What was the motivation? Hardly anyone is asking, but I will.
On the point or two before the no infamous incident, Stan and Nick did have a go at each other and I believe there was another occasion earlier in the match. I think it’s safe to say there was bad blood between the two before they even stepped on the court Wednesday night in Montreal.
In June, Wawrinka crushed Kyrgios at Queen’s in just 49 minutes. Kyrgios said he was sick, but Stan clearly didn’t buy that excuse.
So could Stan have really started this back at Queen’s? I don’t know, but as they say, there’s always another side to every coin.
2) This isn’t Stan’s first beef
We know last fall at the ATP finals something happened between Roger Federer, Mirka Federer and Stan.
Really, Stan getting into it with of all people Federer? I know it appears to be all well and good now, but if Stan would go at it with guy like Roger, hell, he’ll go after anyone and for certain take aim at a brash outspoken youngster like Kyrgios. And I like that about Stan, he’s not afraid and that’s why he’s won two Slams.
So maybe Stan poked the bear that is Kyrgios with those Queen’s comments, and who knows what else, and the bear bit back.
3) What’s up with Stan’s girlfriend
Stan is 30. Donna Vekic is 19. Fact.
Are they dating? They sure seem to be because Stan hasn’t denied it from anything I’ve read – and wouldn’t you set that record straight?
So they are an item and have been an item apparently for quite a while, more than likely even when Donna was just 17 and Stan was still married to his wife Ilham Vuilloud (the two were married in 2009).
That’s right, Stan hasn’t been the most faithful husband. In fact, far from it.
After his wife gave birth to a daughter in 2010, Stan allegedly had an affair with a South American ATP PR member which I guess led to his first separation from his wife Ilham (surprise).
The two reconciled but then Stan got with the teen Vekic and if I had to guess his wife had just about enough at that point and the two split again in April. Maybe Mirka had had enough, too (hence the beef during the ATP Finals).
While Stan seemed to make it sound like a peaceful split, his wife, Ilham, did not and took the blow torch out.
“No, trips and tournaments are not the cause of our separation,” Ilham responded. “Besides, other players, ranked higher than him, handle family life very well. His instability, desire to regain his freedom—at all levels—are the source. And I have to admit the repeated fibs and emotional betrayals eventually destroyed entirely the confidence I had in him.”
Granted, Stan got married young, had a baby at just 24 or so, and perhaps realized, “Oh crap, I made a mistake. Why am I with this older woman – now in her late 30s – when I could be with this hot teen?”
I’m just speculating on their divorce, but connect the dots. Superstar athlete with an older woman, hot teen dream comes along and…yeah, we’ve heard that story before.
So if you are going to cheat on your wife AND go underage, you’d better get ready for some blowback.
And next time, Stan, if you don’t want your opponent talking about your love life and your habit of banging teens, there’s an easy way out: STOP DATING TEENS! HELL, YOU ARE 30 YEARS OLD!
4) Like Trump said last week, enough with this political correctness thing
OK, what Nick said was a bit extreme and like I said, I agree it was unacceptable. But it’s not the first time that’s been said on the playing field and guess what, it won’t be the last.
This kind of trash talk happens all the time across all sports. Usually, though, it’s confined to the locker room (see what happened to NY Jets QB Geno Smith the other day, he got a broken jaw from a teammate) but occasionally it leaks out. And unfortunately, the young Kyrgios didn’t get that memo, doesn’t understand the “locker room code”. Maybe he’ll learn, maybe he won’t. I don’t know.
But I have to ask is what Nick said worse than what his Davis Cup coach Lleyton Hewitt said to James Blake at the US Open in 2001>
Is it worse than Serena Williams threatening a lineswoman?
Is it worse than Roger Federer telling Novak Djokovic’s parents to “be queit”?
Is it worse than Maria Sharapova talking about Serena dating a married man with kids?
Is it worse than Andy Murray telling Lukas Rosol that no one likes him?
Is it worse than Novak Djokovic yelling at a ballboy?
Or what John McEnroe, Ilie Nastase and the other bad boys of tennis before him did?
5) Kyrgios is just 20
He’s still a youngster. And while he needs to be reprimanded, any real punishment for breaking the “guy code” will be dished out in the locker room where I’m guessing he won’t have too many non-Australian supporters left.
So that’s my case for taking it a little easier on Nick.
I admit, I like Nick’s game, he’s a lot of fun and I hope fulfills his true potential, and that is winning Slams. And with this controversy, he becomes even that much bigger of a celebrity – just look at all the news outlets covering this story!
But like I said, he’s an absolute knucklehead and he deserves the venom he’s gotten not only for this incident but also for his behavior in general to this point in his career. The ATP does have a problem with Kyrgios with his tanking and antics, so I think the chair umpires really need to do a better job of keeping this kid (and others) in check. Maybe they will.
And I’m OK with fine – which I think also takes into account his previous indiscretions – however, I think a suspension here is a bit much, unless there’s more to this story.
As for Mr. Wawrinka, let’s be honest, he’s no Mother Theresa either. And maybe he’s the one who’s at the root of this fued. Stan’s had his issues lately with a messy divorce, an alleged romance with a teen player, the beef with the Federers and now this. I really don’t know.
But what I do know is this story has gotten way too much attention and this Kyrgios hate is a little over the top at this point. He’s just an immature kid who said an incredibly dumb thing. As if that’s never happened before…
Back to tennis.
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