Brook Lopez has previously promoted himself as a comic book savant, so TrueHoop’s J.A. Adande put him to the test, showing him ESPN the Magazine’s NBA Preview issue, which features a different Marvel inspired comic book illustration for every team. For the Nets image, ESPN takes a page out of the Fantastic Four and features new owner Mikhail Prokhorov as Galactus, a God-like villain who devours entire planets for fuel. I guess you can see the similarities then?
Lopez, in no shock, nails a lot of the Marvel connections, despite being an admitted “DC” guy, and even nails Adande’s one curveball, an illustration of the Raptors based on Alpha Flight:
That was my best fastball (I had only learned of Alpha Flight’s identity in a briefing at ESPN headquarters the day before) and I couldn’t get it past him. Lopez had proven his worth as a legitimate comic maven, although I’m still trying to picture a 7-foot NBA player trying to navigate his way through Comic-Con.
“You have all those guys in costumes, it takes a little pressure off,” Lopez said.
And just so you know, there are limits to his devotion to comic books: “I haven’t worn a costume.”
Great little color piece, and as a big Marvel guy myself, I have to say I loved the artwork in the magazine. Probably tbe best illustration that wasn’t even mentioned was based on (a personal favorite cover) Amazing Spider-Man #50. The drawing was used for the Cavs and featured LeBron’s Cleveland jersey in the trash with James walking away and a headline “King James No More.” Wonderful, and sad, of course.
Meanwhile, I see the Prokhorov/Galactus comparisons, though I am waiting for the day when a Nets player is featured on something like this, not the owner. It’s a bit of a back-handed compliment that the national media finds the owner more interesting than the team.