You already know who Kelly Oubre Jr. is: A lanky, athletic rookie for the Wizards who certainly possesses the skills to make it in the NBA if he continues to develop, learn and improve. But have you met his second self, Wave Papi?
On both Twitter and Instagram, the Kansas product's handle is @KellyOubre Jr. However, instead of matching up his actual account name on the platforms with his normal handle, he goes by the fairly — OK, really — not normal Wave Papi.
According to Oubre, though, it's his way of paying tribute to the other version of who he is. And, by the sound of it, Wave Papi is just one chill, mellow dude.
"That’s my alter ego," Oubre said before Washington's matchup with New Orleans on Tuesday, in which he scored eight points in nine minutes in the Wizards' 109-89 victory. "Wave Papi is all about good vibes. He’s about staying cool, calm and collected.”
A constant theme throughout Oubre's — or Papi's, whichever name you want to roll with from here on out — social media activity is the ever-present hashtag #Shhh (sometimes he'll take away an "h" or tack on a few more, but the intent is the same each time). When asked about why he ends most of his Instagram posts and many of his tweets in that fashion, he says he's subtly telling people not to sleep on him.
“I’m not a talkative guy," Oubre said. "That’s just me letting people know I’m working. I know what happens in the dark will be revealed in the light."
When watching the 6'7" swingman make a play in transition on the Verizon Center floor or guard an NBA star one-on-one in some visiting arena, it's easy to forget an obvious fact: He just turned 20 years old a few months ago. Most kids his age spend their nights squaring off in Call of Duty in their college dorm room or eating at questionable pizza joints, not taking the floor in front of thousands of fans.
With that in mind, #12 did admit that there are some parts about school that he does miss now that he's a pro.
“I miss the people," Oubre said. "I miss the vibe ... When you’re on the road all the time, you’re a lot busier." Among the things he mentioned that have taken some getting used to, paying bills was at the top of the list, although he did say "setting them for autopay" is a potential solution.
Every major athlete goes through a similar adjustment once he or she makes it to the highest level, and Oubre has plenty of veterans around him to assist in making the process as easy as possible. And, of course, he'll always have his alter ego, too.
Besides — you think Wave Papi gets bothered by a few bills or a long and tiring road trip? No shot. Those aren't good vibes, and, as we've learned, Wave Papi is strictly about the good vibes.