Just in time, we might have found the Syracuse Basketball Lede of the Year, courtesy of Donna Ditota.
Michael Gbinije sat on the edge of a table in the Syracuse locker room and took a small sip out of a bottle of pickles.
No, Gbinije isn't engaging in some kind of super-sneaky product placement or getting ready to start his own artisanal pickle juice company in Brooklyn. Apparently this is all part of a regimen the grad student created to help prevent cramping. Considering Gbinije is coming off of a game in which he played all 40 minutes and will be expected to do again many times in the coming months, if it works, why the hell not?
"This is my own personal thing,'' Gbinije said of his post-game pickle juice. "There are days when I have to force myself to drink it, but I'm just doing it for the health benefits. The taste is not the best.''
"Some people just ask for a pickle out of the jar before I take my first sip, but no one will actually drink the pickle juice,'' Gbinije said. "I get an 'Ew, why are you drinking that?' or 'What's that smell?' You gotta take the good with the bad.''
Gibinje says he drinks Gbinije about three-quarters of the juice in a jar every day in order to take in the high-sodium count and magnesium found therein.
Right now, Gbinije ranks sixth in the NCAA in minutes per game (37.3) so if you're telling me he needs to raid Jerry's Deli in order to keep up this pace, I say everyone give up your sour or dill pickles for Michael and his quest for pickle-fueled greatness.
One person who is all in favor of Gibinje's style of juicing but isn't interested in doing it himself? Mike Hopkins.
"Ever had pickle juice?'' Hopkins said. "Don't try it. Unless you cramp a lot.'