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Rumble gamethread: St. John's vs. Fordham

Join the conversation as St. John's takes on Fordham at Madison Square Garden.

John Alber

St. John's (5-2) is back in action this afternoon against the Fordham Rams (4-2) at the newly renovated Madison Square Garden.

If you didn't see it already, Chris Obekpa wasn't afraid to let his opinions about Fordham heard during yesterday's pregame press conference. As Roger Rubin writes, Obekpa isn't just smacking shot attempts. He's talking smack.

He said that when St. John's and Fordham meet "it's like what I call a beef - I don't like them."

Most of the Johnnies agree that the passion on the floor when the Rams play them qualifies this matchup as a rivalry. Obekpa thinks the Fordham players are driven by a resentment that they are not members of the Storm, New York's highest profile program.

"Most of these (players), I know them. We played in New York," said Obekpa, who went to high school at Our Saviour New American (L.I.) and played on area travel teams. "They're mad I am in this position (playing at St. John's). They think they are supposed to be here. They don't like that I am taking their spot and they're supposed to be here and not me."

"This is their town. (St. John's is their school."

Those are some pretty strong words from the otherwise quiet and concealed big man. Obekpa set a then team record with 11 blocks in the Johnnies' victory over Fordham in last year's Holiday Festival. Today, he'll be back on the Garden floor looking for an encore performance.

Here at the Rumble, we try to avoid talking smack. But we do like to facilitate some healthy banter, which is what we welcome you to bring to the table here as the Red Storm takes on Fordham this afternoon.

In case you missed it, a link to Andrew's Rumble game preview can be found here.