Vaidas Kariniauskas, the unexpected hero of Lithuania’s victory over Team USA at the FIBA World Cup, is taking steps to shield himself from the newfound attention.
The 29-year-old point guard, scored a team-high 15 points, along with 4 rebounds and 2 assists, in a game that sent shockwaves through the basketball world.
In the aftermath of the famous win, Kariniauskas revealed that he had to limit his phone usage and activate the ‘do not disturb’ mode. His coach also advised him to reduce distractions and stay focused.
“I had to use my phone less,” Kariniauskas stated, “I turned on the ‘do not disturb’ mode. The coach also suggested using the phone less. I tried not to go there.”
Despite the historic victory, Kariniauskas emphasized the importance of humility within the team, saying, “I hope that we will remain as humble as we were until now.”
Additionally, Kariniauskas addressed another viral moment when he was spotted wearing a Team USA cap in the locker room after the game. He also went viral for a moment when he wagged his tongue at Austin Reaves.
He clarified that Team USA had exchanged caps with their opponents before the game as part of a gift exchange, and he just put it on after the game
“[Team USA] gave us the caps before the game during the exchange of gifts. I just put it on and didn’t want to offend anyone. I don’t think they were offended – I don’t think they cared what was happening there,” Kariniauskas explained.