It would be an understatement to say Ra'shad James was excited to play for the Westchester Knicks. For the first time since his high school days, James returned to the Westchester County Center. "It feels great," Ra'shad James recently told RidiculousUpside.com. "I got back from overseas and Westchester was the number one thing that was on my mind. "To be able to play for the hometown team and my fans, and just growing up here, it's very exciting for me."
"I had a couple options when I got back from overseas, and Westchester was the No. 1 thing that was on my mind," he said. "To be able to play for the hometown team and my fans, and just growing up here - it's very exciting for me."
This time around, he is apart of the Westchester Knicks. Following his collegiate years, which saw him play at St. Thomas Aquinas and Iona, he went undrafted in the 2013 NBA Draft. That is where his professional basketball career began.
The White Plains native competed overseas in Korea and Poland. In his D-League career, James spent two seasons with the Reno Bighorns, Sacramento's affiliate, prior to getting traded. Not only was he traded, but the guard had the opportunity to return to his home city and in front of his family and fans. This season, he has shown his improvement on offense while playing in a fast-pased offense in Reno. During the forty-six games James played in Reno, he averaged 20.8 points and 4.8 rebounds per game.
Upon arriving with the Knicks, James has made an immediate impact. Westchester needed a boast on offense and James has provided the team with that. Although the young gun has only played a few games in a Westchester uniform, he has proven he feels right at home already. "I'm very comfortable," James said. "I'm not doing anything out of the ordinary for myself and my game. If they deliver me the basketball with the right opportunity to shoot and score, I'm going to do so. But also I'm going to do whatever it takes to help the team win."
Ra'shad James scored 20 points and connected on 3/4 shots from downtown in a win against the Canton Charge.
While the Knicks are making a push towards the playoffs, the team is at the bottom of the D-League in terms of points per game and three-point percentage. Since coming to Westchester, he has sparked the team with his shooting from beyond the arc. "I just feel like we're jelling at the right time with those two big road wins that we got last week really helped us," James said. "I feel like its going to help us carry over into the playoffs to make this push." The Knicks guard is shooting 45.5 percent from downtown this season, along with shooting sixty percent from three-point range in the three games he has played in Westchester.
In the past couple of weeks, the Knicks have seen a few players leave via trade or a call-up. With that being said, James has made an impact off the bench as the Knicks make a push to the playoffs. While James is team oriented player, he maintains a goal of impressing executives and general managers in hopes of being Westchester's fourth call-up of the season.