Who wants to date Raptors’ Sonny Weems?
March 31, 2011
It seems Sonny Weems of the Toronto Raptors
is looking for love -- on Twitter.
DAVID COOPER/TORONTO STAR
Before he died in 1999, Wilt Chamberlain, the NBA legend, claimed to have shared the intimate company of 20,000 women. This week Sonny Weems, the not-yet-legendary Raptor, appeared to be seeking the companionship of one.
“Think (it’s) time for me to get a girlfriend,” Weems wrote on his Twitter page Sunday.
In the wake of that transmission Weems said he has received “fifty-something” responses from Twitter users claiming to be girlfriend material. That number, like Chamberlain’s infamous self-count of the notches on his bed post, has not been independently verified.
Still, it’s not a stretch to suggest that when pro athletes, both male and female, seek romantic partnership, choice comes in quantity. Quality, Weems will tell you, is another matter.
“A lot of females come to you, and they tell you a story. ‘I want to be your girl. I’m different from other females.’ Or whatever. It happens all the time,” Weems said. “Athletes really have it hard, trying to find that person. Who can you trust?”
The conundrum runs both ways, of course. Since even modestly rich and famous athletes appear to be awash in choice — Weems is a bench player who earns a relatively modest $854,389 (U.S.) — any half-awake human with the vaguest knowledge of the fall from grace of, say, Tiger Woods, would be at least a little leery of a promise from a pro.
“It’s hard for us to trust (women), and it’s probably hard for them to trust us, too,” acknowledged Reggie Evans, the veteran Raptors
forward who is married with children.
Why, then, would Weems, at age 24, bother seeking a relationship via Twitter? Evans wondered aloud if Weems has grown tired of being a soloist while one of his closest friends on the team, 21-year-old DeMar DeRozan, spends quality time with a steady girlfriend.
“DeMar’s been having a girlfriend for a while — it’s probably taking a toll on Sonny,” Evans said, a mischievous smile ever in place. “He probably thinks he needs someone.”
Weems, for his part, said he typed his get-a-girlfriend message “just for fun.” And he disputed Evans’ third-wheel theory, pointing out that DeRozan’s girlfriend, Kiara, has been on the scene since DeRozan attended the University of Southern California in 2008-09. Weems referred to Kiara as “one of the fellows.”
“She hangs out with us everywhere we go. DeMar’s with us, and she’s with us,” said the 6-foot-7 Weems. “We tell her everything, just like we tell DeMar.”
Amir Johnson, another of Weems’ close friends on the squad, and a currently single one, said cruising the Internet is futile.
“Just my take: You can’t search for your partner,” said Johnson, 23. “You’ve just got to let it happen naturally. Eventually you’ll find somebody.”
Perhaps that’s true. Weems, for his part, has spent some of this week filling his Twitter page with content that could be mistaken for lovelorn dispatches.
“Just sitting here playing fight night by myself,” Weems wrote in a Wednesday-night update to his 17,000-some followers, making lower-case reference to a popular video game. “(My) boys left me here by myself.”
If it’s true it’s lonely at the top, perhaps it’s doubly so when you’re living through the dregs of a 20-win NBA season. Seemingly happy to talk about anything but basketball, Evans — who, at age 30, amounts to the club’s street-wise philosopher — took some time after a recent practice to offer his best amateur diagnosis of the condition of a teammate’s heart.
“Sonny’s just going through mixed emotions. Want a girlfriend, don’t want a girlfriend. Want that lifestyle, don’t want that lifestyle,” Evans said. “We should do a poll on Twitter, see who wants to go on a date with him. We could make a Canadian reality show, Who Wants to Date Sonny Weems?
“There’s plenty of girls out here in Toronto that can be a good candidate for him. He’s a very nice guy, good guy to be around . . . I guess he needs somebody to keep his pillow warm. I guess his other pillow must be getting cold.”