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Prokhorov to Francesa: Nets Will Use ‘Element of Surprise From Russia’

Earlier today, Mikhail Prokhorov spoke to Mike Francesa, and the interview played out exactly like in our dreams. Topics ranged from LeBron James to the Mad Dog to stone-washed jeans. After the jump, some of our favorite parts.

• After the first couple of questions, Prokhorov interrupted with a query of his own: “I have a question to you: Where is the Mad Dog?” Well played, Team Prokhorov.

• Prokhorov first tried to buy the Knicks a year and a half ago, but they weren’t for sale.

• He said the Nets will be in Brooklyn 26 months from now.

• Prokhorov on why he prefers to sit in a suite, where he has a bird’s-eye view, instead of sitting courtside: “It’s more important to understand the game than to feel the passion.” Ever confident, he says he’d move down from his suite for the finals.

• Francesa, asking a question about his James Bond–like image: “Do you drive, like, an Austin Martin [sic]?”

• When asked a question about LeBron James, Prokhorov responded by coolly saying, “I’ve never heard this name.” He went on to explain he can’t discuss free agents before July 1.

• He said he’d personally be meeting with prospective free agents, presumably to scare them into signing with the Nets.

• He’ll live in Moscow, but fly to the States six to eight times a year to watch games.

• He explained how lucrative the stone-washed jeans game once was back in Russia: For every $1 he spent, he got $14 back.

• On his reputation as a playboy: “I don’t hide the fact that I love women.” At this point, Francesa, too, declared that he loves women, but that he just loves the one, referring to his wife. You could actually hear the testosterone over the airwaves.

• Prokhorov said that he wants a coach with NBA experience, and that the process of hiring a coach would run parallel to (but separate from) the process of signing free agents. (Actually, first he joked that he’d have a coach in place by December. At first, Francesa couldn’t tell that he was kidding. We don’t blame him.)

• On whether the rumor that he’d change the name of the team is true: “I think no.” On whether he has another name in mind: “For the time being, no.”

• He said that he wasn’t disappointed with the Draft Lottery, and he reminded listeners that a guy named Michael Jordan was the third pick in the draft. We suppose this would make Evan Turner 2010’s Sam Bowie. (Incidentally, Francesa asked, and no, Prokhorov doesn’t know who Sam Bowie is.)

• He grew up a fan of Larry Bird’s, and the two met at the Draft Lottery last night. Bird told him he’d never been to Russia, so Prokhorov invited him. We think he may have also offered Francesa a job on Russian radio.

• And our favorite part of the interview: On several occasions, Prokhorov mentioned that the franchise would utilize “the element of surprise” as they build the team into a contender. At one point, he changed the wording slightly, calling it an “element of surprise from Russia.” We’re terrified — but excited — about what this might mean. Feel free to leave your best guess in the comments.

Prokhorov to Francesa: Nets Will Use ‘Element of Surprise From Russia’