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Mikhail Prokhorov's Charm Offensive

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The most memorable scenes from Mikhail Prokhorov's "60 Minutes" interview featured scantily clad women, an AK-47 and a model of a $45 million yacht that was sailing somewhere between missing and who cares.  For its time (two whole months ago), it had value. But Prokhorov's 48 hours in New York last week held a different message: softening his image on one hand, strengthening it on the other.

The New York Observer details the long list of events, some of which are new, to show what the trip's real purpose was.  As David Stern said, "I think he was just an oligarch before, and now he is Mikhail Prokhorov," and as Times' basketball writer Howard Beck notes, "I think it let people know that this guy was very much enjoying the experience of being the source of curiosity and intrigue."