Rashad McCants ‘humbled and grateful’ to be No. 1 pick in inaugural BIG3 draft

Over a decade after hearing his name called at the 2005 NBA Draft, Rashad McCants heard his name called again, this time as the No. 1 overall pick in Sunday’s BIG3 player draft.

McCants was drafted at the top of the draft by Team Trilogy, who is led by captains Kenyon Martin and Al Harrington and head coach Rick Mahorn.

The former UNC guard didn’t have much of a relationship with his new teammates before the draft but needless to say, he impressed them with a strong showing at Saturday’s combine.

“Nope, not at all, not at all,” Martin told FOX Sports when asked if Team Trilogy drafted based on previous relationships. “I put on my Instagram, #NoFriendsInTheDraft. So nah, it’s about winning. We cool, but I’m about winning. So if we not friends because I didn’t pick you in this, we were never friends.”

Harrington and Martin, who played a season together for the Nuggets, pulled the trigger on McCants with ease on Sunday and the shooting guard says it’s partly thanks to the hard work he put in after throwing his name in the hat for the new league.

“I’m a fitness trainer, it’s what I do for work,” McCants told FOX Sports. “But I just put a lot of two-a-days in and just made sure I was in shape and could move up and down. I think now, at 32, I feel like I’ve been out the league for so long I’m still 24 or 25. I can still move and do all the things to help the team win.”

McCants’ efforts in the gym didn’t go to waste as he was selected over players who managed more successful NBA careers, like DeShawn Stevenson and Larry Hughes, and a few who you could argue should have been taken on name recognition alone, like Steve Francis.

However, McCants knows that hard work beats talent on most days, so he set out to be as prepared as possible for another chance at playing competitive basketball without having to travel abroad.

“Man, I’m humbled and grateful. Just to be a part of the league and be able to be a participant was just major. The preparation for it all was major but then to get picked No. 1 is an appreciate factor because guys recognize my talent, the hard work I put in over the years, and I just came in in-shape and ready to play. So I feel like it was much deserved.”