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Manu Ginobili pretty excited about Argentinian pope


This handout picture released by the Press office shows Pope Francis, Argentina’s Jorge Mario Bergoglio, leading a mass at the Sistine Chapel at the Vatican on March 14, 2013 a day after his election. Pope Francis and the cardinals who made him the first Latin American leader of the Catholic Church returned to the Sistine Chapel on Thursday, this time to celebrate mass together. AFP PHOTO/OSSERVATORE ROMANO RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - MANDATORY CREDIT ?AFP PHOTO/OSSERVATORE ROMANO” (Photo credit should read -/AFP/Getty Images)

AFP/Getty Images

Until Wednesday, if you asked people from Argentina about God, you probably got an answer about Lionel Messi.

But now Argentina is buzzing because Buenos Aires native and Cardinal Jorge Mario Begoglio is now Pope Francis, the head of the Catholic Church worldwide.

Among those pretty excited is Argentina’s greatest basketball player Manu Ginobili, who was practicing with the San Antonio Spurs before Thursday’s game against Dallas, and talked about the pope, according to Spurs Nation at the Express-News.

“It is incredible,” Ginobili said after this morning’s shootaround. “We were watching and when we heard the name I said, ‘What? Did we hear it right?’

“We were all in shock. The country is going crazy….

“An Argentinean being in charge of a billion people is not something that happens often,” Ginobili said. “Catholicism is the main religion in my country and, of course, it is a big thing.”

So if Ginobili hits some miracle shots in the playoffs, or just seems to get all the calls, we can now blame someone higher up than David Stern.