Kirilenko's wife encourages him to wander — once a year

Published: Saturday, March 4 2006 12:00 a.m. MST

Jazz forward Andrei Kirilenko's extracurricular sex life, or lack thereof, has become a subject of national amusement.

Kirilenko's wife, Masha Lopatova, once a pop star in the couple's native Russia, is quoted in the current issue of ESPN The Magazine as saying she allows her husband to have sex with another woman one night a year.

"When this article comes out, girls will be lining up outside his hotel door," she told the magazine. "When I'm aware and I let him do it, it's not cheating."

Kirilenko's response: "I'm not planning to do anything. But she said if you want to do it, you can do it."

The story became a hot topic on American sports-talk radio and cable television earlier this week, including ESPN's popular "Pardon The Interruption." Said co-host Michael Wilbon, a Washington Post columnist, "Ain't Mrs. Kirilenko the coolest wife in the world or what?" Quipped co-host Tony Kornheiser, also a Post columnist: "She is a top-five wife, all-time."

One other interesting revelation from the magazine story shed light on how Kirilenko likes to spend some of his offseason time away from conservative Utah: "I have seven months when I can be patient," he said, "and five months when I can go to nightclubs and nobody will say anything to me."

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