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Rick Pitino had to change his cell phone number for incredible reason

Rick Pitino in a suit

Mar 21, 2023; New York, NY, USA; New St. John s head coach Rick Pitino speaks at his introductory press conference at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY Sports

St. John’s coach Rick Pitino has a new cell phone number on Monday, and he had to make the change for the wildest of reasons.

Pitino was one of the high-profile figures at Madison Square Garden on Sunday for the New York Knicks’ playoff win against the Cleveland Cavaliers. ESPN’s broadcast showed him amid its montage of celebrity sightings, but picked the worst time to do it. Pitino could be seen apparently giving out his cell phone number, and some talented lip-readers managed to decode it.

Pitino admitted on Monday that he had received over 300 messages, with almost all of them positive. He even claimed to have a lead on seven new recruits.

The 70-year-old Pitino became the new St. John’s coach last month after taking Iona to the NCAA Tournament. He’s advancing a friendly rivalry with John Calipari in the process, but Calipari has never accidentally leaked his own cell number, so score one for the Kentucky coach.

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