Union - The Most Collaborative Sports Blog on the InternetUnion - The Most Collaborative Sports Blog on the Internet
SportsBlogNet - Your last stop for everything sports-relateda part of Sports Blog Net

Meet Rashad McCants, Would-Be Namesake for R3 Sports

Before deciding to revive The ODC, the sports writing bug appeared to be taking me down a different path. I was planning to write for Hoops Addict, hopefully latch on to a legitimate baseball site, and throw the in-between stuff up for my boys Austin and Chris over at The Good Point. What I had planned to do was keep all of my personal writing on my own website, but with no promotion or fanfare – it would strictly be an archive for my work.

Obviously, things didn’t go down that way. However, had that site been hatched, it would have been named R3sports.com. That’s R-to-the-power-of-3 Sports (.com). What the hell, you’re probably asking? Fair enough. But to explain, I must first take you to RashadMcCants1.com.

If The On Deck Circle is the unofficial home of Real Talk, then RashadMcCants1.com is it’s summer home or downtown apartment, because it certainly spends a lot of time there. R3 (Real Recognize Real) is an axiom I had only heard a few times before (usually as ‘game recognize game’) but am now in love with. Non-sensical athlete crushes will do that to you.

Disclaimer: ‘Athlete crush’ refers to liking a player too much or without reason, it is nothing weird. Okay, it’s a little weird

Anyways, it only took me one visit to the site last season to have my baller-crush on McCants (dating back to his UNC days) re-affirmed. McCants is, by all accounts, a gangster, a fashionista, a poet, an artists, a philanthropist, and a baller.

McCants has a clothing line on the way, Young Black & Gifted, that is generally urban wear but with a dressier tinge to flow well with his personal, dressier style. He claims it serves a higher purpose, to motivate and inspire.

McCants has a number of tattoos ranging from the normal to the strange, including an ‘R3’ tattoo that takes up his entire left pectoral. He explains that he wears tattoos with the belief that life is pain, the pain of the actual tattoo turning to something everlasting being the perfect metaphor for life’s pains not being as bad as they seem in the long run.

These themes run over into the poetry section of his page, Rashad’s Writings, where he blends a disregard for style conformity with a strange bevy of metaphors to create some dark but inspiring imagery.

And his community work is modestly highlighted as well. His commitment to programs like Shoot for the Cure come from his life’s experience, with his mother having survived breast cancer, and his general good nature.

Rashad also blogs frequently, sharing his thoughts and feelings about life and the NBA grind. 2008-09 has been just that - a grind - for Rashad so far, buried on the T-Wolves depth chart and receiving very little run.

It’s not for a lack of talent – after all, McCants was the 14th overall selection in the 2005 draft and had a very successful 2007-08 campaign. Shooting over 40% from long range and posting 14.9 points a game in just 26.9 minutes, McCants made a strong case all season long for more playing time and a bigger role. He proved himself worthy of a lottery selection, and expectations grew higher for the 2001 High School Student of the Year.

Despite this success and obvious potential, McCants has appeared in just 30 of Minnesota’s 46 games this year, earning less than 20 minutes a night. His scoring, at 9.6 points per game, is still an obvious asset but his percentages are down across the board. He has lost his growing reputation as a three point threat (32% down from 40%) and has appeared a grand wizard of inefficiency (36% shooting overall and a PER of 10.36, down from an impressive 14.82). His always-questionable passing instincts have continued to be a problem (1.0 assists per game), and his defensive intensity has been questioned a great deal.

Rashad has tried to bite his tongue (even admitting to this), and rumors have popped up about him wanting a trade or the T-Wolves looking to move him. His game needs some improvement, and his priorities can be questioned by league sources with fair reason.

Still, to call McCants unlikable or to suggest he does not have his priorities in line is unfair. He is a person first, it seems, and a basketball player second. He has interests that go beyond basketball, but he cherishes the game and it is his inspiration and vehicle for those outside interests. Rashad is a different breed of baller; an intelligent, well-dressed, articulate young black man well-rounded enough for today’s real world.

McCants hides nothing about himself - he is the epitome of real. That’s why I took the time today to recognize.

“Once you open it up and start to read it, you find out things that you’ve never really seen or heard before. And I think that really describes me.” – Rashad McCants, comparing himself to reading The Bible

Share and Enjoy:

One Response to “Meet Rashad McCants, Would-Be Namesake for R3 Sports”

  1. Blake Murphy Says:

    For the first time since January 7, McCants got run tonight. I take full credit.

    10 points (4/7, 2/4 from 3), 4 boards, 1 steal, 1 block, 2 turnovers in 15 minutes

Leave a Reply