Thursday, January 13, 2005

Rashad McCants, and what promises to be an exciting Saturday

I can't wait for Saturday's UNC-Wake Forest matchup.

I watched most of last night's game, in which Carolina shelled #8 Georgia Tech . I left that game with a couple of impressions. First, about Tech. Georgia Tech is a good team, but without B.J. Elder, they really aren't. Their bench was awful last night. I think I read that they got only 11 points from the bench. You can't win in the ACC if you're only 5 deep. However, Jarrett Jack is proving to be one of the best guards in the nation. Although he didn't have a spectacular night against the Heels, he still managed to put up 24 quiet points.

Now, about the Heels. Although they pasted the Yellowjackets, they didn't play that well. They shot only 41.2% from the field, committed 19 turnovers, and only got 12 points out of the mercurial and mysterious Rashad McCants, who is arguably the best player in the nation. They didn't play well, and still destroyed the #8 team in the nation. The way they did it, though, is what makes this team so great, and what makes them a good candidate for national champions. They play as a team. Patient and focused. Fundamentally sound (most of the time). AND they like to run the ball. And run. And run. That mixture of talent, poise and stamina is deadly to opposing teams. I just hope they can keep it up.
But while I'm thinking about Rashad McCants, I'll add a little more. Most of the complaints about McCants are that he's emotional; that he frowns sometimes and sulks when he plays poorly, that he sometimes gets visibly upset. I don't really see what the problem is. He's a phenomenal ballplayer, and he happens to have emotions. On and off the court
Rashad McCants The SI article back in November was really good, as is the article that is linked above, which both go into the depths of who Rashad McCants is as a man more so than who he is as a player. His growth as a person, and his much publicized "buying into Coach Williams' system" are certainly a big part of who he is as a ballplayer, but there is more to him than just a ballplayer.

Now playing:Beach Boys--Pet Sounds Sessions
Beach Boys Pet Sounds Sessions


doug said...

I think I'm gonna go to some kind of Wake Forest/Duke/Kentucky fan hell for liking this Carolina team this year - they scare the hell out of me, but they are so fun to watch! And those Kansas people (I have a friend who is a big Kansas fan) who are pining for a UNC/Kansas showdown in the tourney better be careful for what they wish for!

Reid said...

The Heels looked really sloppy against Maryland, too, but still gave them a quality shellacking. This team is really exciting in that they still try to do the fireworks, but where they differ is that when those don't work, they're able to pull back and play more fundamentally.

Still...I'm trying not to get too excited. Still a lot of basketball to be played.