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MORE THAN MEETS THE EYE
Jack McCallum
February 09, 1987
Kiki Vandeweghe is the key key to Portland's resurgence
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February 09, 1987

More Than Meets The Eye

Kiki Vandeweghe is the key key to Portland's resurgence

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But there obviously is more to Vandeweghe than meets the eye. His stoic demeanor—he has received only one technical foul in his seven seasons—hides an active, restless nature. One of the horses in which he has an interest, Dahar, was a top-class turf performer in California. His knowledge of sports cars is far-ranging; he once prevented his brother, Br�k, from being swindled on a deal when he recognized that the car Br�k was about to buy lacked a set of rivets that would certify its authenticity. He says he likes collecting coins because they give him "a piece of history."

The Vandeweghe family has a proud history of its own. His father, Ernie, a pediatrician, played in the NBA with the Knicks while attending medical school. An uncle, Mel Hutchins, was a BYU basketball star whose promising NBA career was cut short by a knee injury. Kiki's mother, Colleen, was Miss America in 1952. His younger sister Tauna was an Olympic swimmer in 1976. And Kiki himself was a national age-group swimming champion at 8 and continued to set records until he was 13.

Though he says basketball came hard for him, it certainly doesn't anymore. During last Friday's 125-107 win over New Jersey, Vandeweghe drove the lane with two Nets in tow. Turning his back to the basket, he drew the foul while spinning a shot off the backboard. It went in. The crowd went crazy and his teammates high-fived him, but as he walked to the line, Vandeweghe looked to be in a zone of his own. Then, as usual, he made the free throw.

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