One year after saluting Villanova fans with both of his middle fingers and then promptly blowing the game, St. Joe’s forward Halil Kanacevic was asked by reporters this week if he was relieved that the Hawks' next game against ’Nova - this Saturday at 6 p.m. - is in his home gym.
And he responded with what was the equivalent of a shrug. A manly shrug.
“Personally, I don’t care,” he said. “It could have been there. I have no problem with it. But whatever, it’s here. I’ll go play there – I don’t care. Whatever happened last year happened last year. It’s a new year.”
Hear that, ’Nova fans? Kanacevic isn’t scared of your middle-finger-prompted heckling. And he’ll surely get plenty of that from the Main Liners that were able to secure a seat in tiny Hagan Arena for Saturday’s Big 5 showdown in Philadelphia.
But there might not be too many of them. For my CSNPhilly.com game preview, Kanacevic told me that “getting tickets is harder than getting tickets for the Super Bowl” and that he can’t even get some of his family members seats in the cozy gym.
The fans that do make it inside the building will almost certainly see a great game (perhaps a court-storming if St. Joe's pulls off the win against the 14th-ranked team?) but they probably won’t see any more obscene gestures. Kanacevic has learned his lesson that giving the finger to an entire section of students is not exactly the smartest thing to do.
“I probably should be the one that dwells on it the most,” he said. “It happened. I learned from it. I’m not gonna do it again. That’s pretty much all I can say about it, honestly. But whether the game being here, there, people dwelling on it, that’s really out of my mind. I’m just worried about winning a basketball game.”