Wizards Valentines Day
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From the Court to Courtship: Wizards Talk Romance

It’s here again, folks: the most romantic day of the year according to your girlfriend and card companies. Feeling a little rusty when it comes to love? We’ve got your back, so you can get some back. We polled some of our Wizards fellas for some insight on how to do Valentine’s Day right. With some single-and-ready-to-mingle ideas, and some feedback from our taken bros that’s tried and true, you have everything you need.

Kelly Oubre – On the market

On Tap: What is your idea of a perfect date night in DC?
Kelly Oubre: I think a perfect date would be two people going around the city seeing the attractions. Maybe have a little picnic in front of a memorial or something like that – that would be pretty smooth. They’ve got some nice restaurants out here, go to a restaurant. Have a good time with somebody just one-on-one, and pretty much just go see the sites. I think in DC that’d be something cute to do.

OT: What are three things you look for in a partner?
KO: Personality, I got to be able to vibe with them; cares about others; and is just a positive person.

OT: Where do you buy your Valentine’s Day gifts in the area?
KO: Tiffany & Co. That’s pretty solid.

OT: Where is the most romantic place to take your date in DC?
KO: RPM or Ocean Prime

OT: What’s the best piece of dating advice you’ve ever received?
KO: Invest a lot of time in your significant other. Don’t worry about other people, just worry about you two. Things will go smoother that way.

OT: What is your favorite place in the area to meet people?
KO: Georgetown


Ian Mahinmi – Married

On Tap: What is your idea of a perfect date night in DC?
Ian Mahinmi: I already had it; it was really awesome. I’d say leaving the house by 6:30, nice suit on. My lady in a nice dress, heels, makeup done right. Taking selfies in the car, driving to the spot. Fig & Olive is actually my favorite spot. Playing a little Bruno Mars in the car – that’s what my lady likes to hear. Get a little wine to start, a couple appetizers, a good dinner, good dessert. Go home, watch a movie or one of our shows, and call it a night.

OT: Do you like to go all out for Valentine’s Day?
IM: I do like to do something special, maybe not all out every year, but I feel like it’s Valentine’s Day, so step up your game a little bit. Make a reservation [at] one of the best spots in town, wherever we’re at. Always dressing nice – got to look good, and flowers. I do flowers. This is like a must. Any Valentine’s Day, my lady gets flowers, my mom gets flowers, everybody gets flowers.

OT: Where do you buy your Valentine’s Day gifts in the area?
IM: That’s a good question, I haven’t really thought about that yet. Her birthday is February 9, so Valentine’s Day is a week after that. She already gets a good gift for her birthday, so she usually doesn’t really get anything crazy.

OT: Where did you meet your wife?
IM: The first time I saw her was at a lounge in San Antonio, and then I liked her so much. I was lucky enough to have one of my best friends know her best friend, and somehow they connected us.

OT: What is your favorite place to take your wife in DC?
IM: Fig & Olive and RPM. We actually spent New Year’s Eve at Fig & Olive, and I think the night before we were at RPM, so it’s back-to-back between those two places.


Jason Smith – Married

On Tap: What is your idea of a perfect date night in DC?
Jason Smith: I’m a very simple individual, so a perfect date night for me [would be with] my wife. And I have a baby daughter. She’s two years old and my wife is now pregnant with our second child, so she would definitely want to have a lowkey meal. Might spice it up – we’ll get a babysitter for our daughter, we’ll go out to a nice steakhouse, she’ll get a nice meal, we’ll have a nice dinner conversation, come back, relieve the babysitter and probably call it a night after that.

OT: Do you like to go all out for Valentine’s Day?
JS: I will get her flowers and maybe some chocolates. The typical, but nothing super crazy.

OT: Where do you buy your Valentine’s Day gifts in the area?
JS: It’s going to be new for me. I haven’t been in this area, so I’m going to have to find a spot to go to for Valentine’s Day. Being in Bethesda, I think it won’t be too hard. They have a lot of good places out there. I might hit up Georgetown Cupcake now that I think about that. You’re welcome, Georgetown Cupcake.

OT: Where did you meet your wife?
JS: I met my wife when I was in Philly. We were up there, and then I got traded down to New Orleans and she came down to New Orleans with me. We decided to hitch up and had a blast down there. We got married in the Philadelphia area. She’s from New Jersey, about 30 minutes outside of Philadelphia. It was a good wedding. My family came out from Colorado. Her family was close, so we had a nice, good get together, and it has been great ever since.

OT: What is your favorite place to take your wife in DC?
JS: The restaurant we really want to try is the Mexican restaurant, Uncle Julio’s. I keep on hearing great things about it, so I think we’re going to try that place for sure.


Otto Porter – On the market

On Tap: What is your idea of a perfect date night in DC?
Otto Porter: You definitely have to go out to dinner somewhere nice. My spot is Ruth’s Chris in Crystal City. [It’s] next to the airport; it has an amazing view. It’s a nice spot. Then maybe [go] to the movies or something like that. Keep it traditional.

OT: What are three things you look for in a partner?
OP: She has to have a great sense of humor. She has to be beautiful, kind and caring. She’s got to like basketball.

OT: What’s the worst date you’ve ever been on, and how did you recover?
OP: I’ve never really had a worst date. I make sure all my dates go according to plan.

OT: Where do you buy your Valentine’s Day gifts in the area?
OP: Depends on the gift. I go Neiman Marcus or Tysons Corner. They have a lot of different shops that you can go to. Oh, and Victoria’s Secret.

OT: Where is the most romantic place to take your date in DC?
OP: I would say the CityCenter. That’s a real nice spot. A lot of lights, [and] some camera action for great pictures.

OT: What’s the best piece of dating advice you’ve ever received?
OP: Don’t set your standards [too] high, always be open.

OT: Is dating in DC easy, or do you find it to be more of a challenge?
OP: The great thing about DC is that it is like a melting pot. There’s a variety of people that live here. That kind of makes it easy, but at the same time it’s tough to find out where everybody is at.

OT: What is your favorite place in the area to meet people?
OP: [The] Georgetown area.

Learn more about the Wizards at www.nba.com/wizards.

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Kaitlyn McQuin

Kaitlyn McQuin hails from New Orleans and is a writer, actor, and funny lady with an affinity for caffeine and Amy Poehler. Though her articles typically cover theatre, Kaitlyn also enjoys writing for the millennial crowd. Some of her work has been published on Mavenly + Co., Thought Catalog, and Red Beans and Life. In her spare time, she enjoys staying active, scouring DC for the perfect beer, and teaching her mom how to properly use FaceTime. You can find more of her writing on her blog, Powered by Sass, where she tells it like it is about balancing careers, remembering to pay your bills, and loving someone in the military.