Why We Watch: Rasheed Wallace, Outlaw

Rasheed Wallace is very good at basketball, but the experience he gives fans is more complicated and more transporting than that.
Share |

In the closing minutes of the Knicks' sign-of-the-apocalypse end-to-end season-opening trouncing of the Miami Heat, the Garden crowd called upon head coach Mike Woodson to bestow upon them a token of victory. They called for Rasheed Wallace. Once one of the most versatile big-men in the NBA, Wallace last saw action with the Boston Celtics in 2009-10 in a performance that, taken as a whole, was mostly notable for how it enraged Bill Simmons.  Now two years later, his name reverberating through the Garden, Sheed entered the game in the role of victory blunt. "I accept my Brian Scalabrine role. I'm cool with it," Rasheed told USA Today's Jeff Zillgitt after the game. The comment sent the basketball interwebs into spasms of wild glee. Rasheed does that a lot.

Right now, the Knicks are 5-0 for pretty much the first time since the internet existed. After three games, Rasheed Wallace's PER sat at a league-leading, small-sample-size-testing-positive-for-crack 30.53. In the third of those games, the second night of a back-to-back against Philadelphia, Rasheed played his first non-victory-blunt minutes of the season. Entering the game in the third quarter, Rasheed unleashed a brace of threes, picked up three boards, a couple of blocks, and, most importantly, debut his new long-range bomb celebration—a mimicked suicide by handgun, thumb as the hammer with three fingers for the barrel, fired into the right temple. "It's three points. Take that to the head," Rasheed explained to anyone who actually needed an authorial parsing of its deep Jungian symbolism.

There is simply no knowing the amount or quality of minutes Rasheed Wallace will see this season. If his 2009-10 campaign is any guide, the balance of those minutes are likely to be spent casually jogging the area between the three point lines as if the space beyond them was filled with sarin gas; jacking threes/periodically miming shooting himself in the head as if he were Christopher Walken in a Saigon brothel; and periodically adding to his intergalactic record of technical fouls. But, really, who knows what Rasheed is capable of, or more to the point what he'll do? He is 38 years old and has enough baggage to require a team of porters; he couldn't be more of a target for the officials and league if he had a predator-drone constantly circling above him.

And, motherfucker, this is Why The Fuck We Watch.

***

We watch because there is a special sort of person who can do things which society-at-large deems to be "wrong"—fighting, marijuana use, disrespect of authority figures, unwillingness to conform to social norms, not-particularly well-kept beards, and so on—and emerge from those repeated transgressions not diminished in the public eye, but with an ever more roguish, anti-heroic magnetism. The usual commentators cluck when Rasheed does the things that Rasheed repeatedly, invariably and unapologetically does—see the parenthetical clause above. But those who truly understand the transgressive thing he's after, who dare take Rasheed Wallace to the head, find him only more appealing and inspiring to our repressed but un-extinguished inner rebelliousness with each new transgression.

Rasheed is ticketed for marijuana possession while driving home from a game with Damon Stoudamire. Short-term result: Fines, court dates, disappointed fans, sanctimonious sports-talk handwringing. Long-term result: endless weed-related jokes (I'm not above it) that serve only to burnish Rasheed's image as an NBA counter-culture happening. Rasheed spends an entire post-game press conference answering only "Both teams played hard," regardless of its relation, if any, to the questions he's asked. Short-term result: Rasheed is fined $30,000 dollars by the NBA for flouting the sanctity of the press conference. Long-term result: One of the most indelible and quotable moments in recent sports history; a catch-phrase for NBA heads; and the image of Rasheed as the guy who doesn't give a fuck in the way that we office-bound respectables wish we could afford not to give a fuck. Or, in the moment that has been repeated most often, Sheed gets one of his panoply of techs/gets thrown out of a game. Short-term result: a negative impact on his team, fouls shots, fines, and suspensions. Long-term result: more entertainment, again, as the Rasheed Explosion quickly became one of the most anticipated moments in the NBA emotional canon. I can't count the number of games I've watched in which, upon the first puffs of smoke from the top of Mt. Sheed, everyone watching the game began whooping something along the lines of "UH-OH, HERE HE GOES," with all the glee of little kids waiting giddily for Bruce Banner to turn into the Hulk. It's a lot.

Part of growing up is calling a personal truce with the expectations of society. As youngsters we may imbibe of various things, dress weirdly, play class-clown, but eventually the world and The Man get their way, as they must. You will play by the rules or you will wait tables into your forties. Society breaks even the wildest of horses; there are a lot of movies about this. But there are, for the vicarious transgression of those tamed citizens, even more movies about outlaws and anti-heroes. The outlaw sees the way the rules are set-up and decides do the opposite. We ride along, on the page or in a movie theater or wherever, at a safe distance. Then we get back to work, grateful for the time we spent outside everything.

That is where Rasheed Wallace lives, and what he gives us.

Rasheed Wallace went through Knicks practice in sweatpants rolled up to above his ankles and a backwards jersey. Rasheed wore a T-shirt that read "FUCK WHAT YA HEARD" to his Blazers introductory press conference. Rasheed succinctly sums up big-time sports businesses' relations with its employees with the indelible bon mot "CTC" (Cut The Check), pissing off the sports media establishment by daring to express a motivation that doesn't begin and end with THE LOVE OF THE GAME. Rasheed blows up at the officials and gets technicals. Rasheed threw a towel in a teammate's face. He was a total dick to Ruben Boumtje Boumtje.

Whose inner-teenager doesn't, now and again, fantasize about walking into class or the office wearing what-the-fuck-ever; telling an authority figure where they can put it; giving 70% and having it be better than 90% of your competition; and telling the world to take it or leave it? And then to have the world take it. And then keep taking it until you're near a decade past a prime you never cared about anyway. This. Is. Why. We. Watch.

Illustration by Michael Arcangeli.


Share |

Comments

Superbly written article, if only all bloggers offered the same content as you, the internet would be a far better place.. https://cheap55printing.com/blog/tag/cheap-butterfly-bookmarks/

A debt of gratitude is in order for your data, it was truly extremely helpfull.. London Accountant Tax Return

one season gold is a must have and the next season is being labelled as ‘old fashioned’. Silver jewellerypowers through the trends as a constant part of fashion, it is used constantly by the big designers and worn by many celebs. At Something Elegant, we chose to specialise in Sterling Silver Jewellerybecause of all the above reasons. But, not only is silver jewellery beautiful, it is also very affordable in these difficult times. This is what is so wonderful about silver jewellery when compared to gold tag at 55printing.comcustomized canvas prints at 55printing.com

 With luxury watches, you could at most put them in a safe, you could also insure them, but absolutely nothing compels you to do so. For all these reasons, the luxury watch market is one of the most accessible markets of precious objects.  com

I truly inspired after read this on account of some quality work and instructive musings . I just wanna express profound gratitude for the author and want you to enjoy all that life has to offer for coming!. Wrap Him Around Your Finger

one season gold is a must have and the next season is being labelled as ‘old fashioned’. Silver jewellerypowers through the trends as a constant part of fashion, it is used constantly by the big designers and worn by many celebs. At Something Elegant, we chose to specialise in Sterling Silver Jewellerybecause of all the above reasons. But, not only is silver jewellery beautiful, it is also very affordable in these difficult times. This is what is so wonderful about silver jewellery when compared to gold Race medals

Clash Royale PC is a strategy game in real time, where you fight against other players online in frantic duels. Here, you can find all the characters from Clash of Clans: Giants, Barbarian Kings, Wall Breakers, Archers. Download the PC game now! play clash royale on pc and mac

Your content is nothing short of brilliant in many ways. I think this is engaging and eye-opening material. Thank you so much for caring about your content and your readers. Spirulina Benefits

I haven’t any word to appreciate this post.....Really i am impressed from this post....the person who create this post it was a great human..thanks for shared this with us. Relationship ebook

one season gold is a must have and the next season is being labelled as ‘old fashioned’. Silver jewellerypowers through the trends as a constant part of fashion, it is used constantly by the big designers and worn by many celebs. At Something Elegant, we chose to specialise in Sterling Silver Jewellerybecause of all the above reasons. But, not only is silver jewellery beautiful, it is also very affordable in these difficult times. This is what is so wonderful about silver jewellery when compared to gold Custom lapel pins

The data you have posted is extremely helpful. The locales you have alluded was great. A debt of gratitude is in order for sharing.. Girl is horny

one season gold is a must have and the next season is being labelled as ‘old fashioned’. Silver jewellerypowers through the trends as a constant part of fashion, it is used constantly by the big designers and worn by many celebs. At Something Elegant, we chose to specialise in Sterling Silver Jewellerybecause of all the above reasons. But, not only is silver jewellery beautiful, it is also very affordable in these difficult times. This is what is so wonderful about silver jewellery when compared to gold Christian Mejia

Great site! I really cherish how it is simple on my eyes it is. I am considering how I may be informed at whatever point another post has been made. I have subscribed to your RSS which may do the trap? Have an incredible lowcountry custom style homes

This web journal is truly awesome. The data here will definitely be of some help to me. Much appreciated!. Questions to ask

Jeff Zillgitt after the game. The comment sent the basketball interwebs into spasms of wild glee. Rasheed does that a lot. get free seo audit

he couldn't be more of a target for the officials and league if he had a predator-drone constantly circling above him. http://freemusicallyfollowers.iwantthis4free.com/

Relegation became showed with 4 video games ultimate and Moyes has due to the fact that been replaced by means of Simon Grayson. http://www.perfectbettingonline.co.uk/

Your site is truly cool and this is an extraordinary moving article. fitness

Great tips and very easy to understand. This will definitely be very useful for me. voyance-retour-amour.com

As the power of PageRank is getting lower, flow metrics matter. Google gives a huge importance to metrics like domain authority, trust flow or citation flow as a ranking factor. trust flow

Numerous artists, vocalists, on-screen character, on-screen character are winding up plainly more well known and acquainted with the assistance of Instagram. free instagram followers | likes for instagram

As the power of PageRank is getting lower, flow metrics matter. Google gives a huge importance to metrics like domain authority, trust flow or citation flow as a ranking factor. high trust flow backlinks

I was taking a gander at some of your posts on this site and I imagine this site is truly enlightening! Keep setting up.. blog comments service

We jazz our business company relationships critically and goal to maintain long wellborn. Niche relevant blog commenting | unique articles

I couldn't find any knowledge on this matter prior to.Also operate a site and if you are ever interested in doing some.
Personal Injury

Your listing are progressing with days dungeon it up guys. in-home care in vacaville

I think this is an informative post and it is very useful and knowledgeable. therefore, I would like to thank you for the efforts you have made in writing this article.
Criminal Defense Attorney

I’m eager to find the valuable information and for me this is the right place to get the good stuff. amazing selling machine

it's really nice and meanful. it's really cool blog. Linking is very useful thing.you have really helped lots of people who visit blog and provide them usefull information.
reviews on mspy software

Thanks for a wonderful share. Your article has importations your hard work and experience you have got in This field. Brilliant reading .I love it.
ipage vs godaddy

Very exciting to study this content.I would like to thank you for the initiatives you had created for composing this amazing content.
bluehost promo code

I think this is an informative post and it is very useful and knowledgeable. therefore, I would like to thank you for the efforts you have made in writing this article.
locksmiths in phoenix

Your article has importations your hard work and experience you have got in This field. Brilliant reading .I love it.Garageband for PC

I was taking a gander at some of your posts on this site and I imagine this site is truly enlightening! Keep setting up.. blog comments service

Such sites are called extranets; they establish a secure communication channel between two or more companies, suppliers and vendors. SEO for Business

I must say, I thought this was a pretty interesting read when it comes to this topic. Liked the material. http://www.exchange-gearboxes.co.uk/reconditioned--replacement-gearboxes-service/index.html

شركة تنظيف بالخبر لتقديم المستوي الراقي جدا فاننا نقوم بخدمات التنظيف الداخلي والخارجي باي منزل فداخليا نهتم بتنظيف الأبواب بكل ما يتعلق بها من أتربه وملوثات واتساخات ونزيل كل هذا علي الفور  ونقوم أيضا بأعمال تنظيف الشبابيك وما يتعلق بها من أتربه ونقوم أيضا بأعمال تنظيف شامله للأرضيات والسيراميك والرخام والبلاط ونقدم دائما الخدمة بأسلوب راقي اما خارجيا نقوم بأعمال تنظيف المسابح وتنقيه المياه بداخلها ونقوم أيضا بتنظيف الخزانات بما يضمن لك الراحة وعدم التفكير فى الاستعانه بشركات النظافة بالخبر والدمام

شركة تنظيف بالجبيل

Extremely helpful post. This is my first time i visit here. I discovered such a large number of fascinating stuff in your web journal particularly its examination. Truly its extraordinary article. Keep it up. Resin Bound Driveways

Also great blog here with all of the valuable information you have. Keep up the good work you are doing here. Loftplan

The web site is lovingly serviced and saved as much as date. So it should be, thanks for sharing this with us. Women's Fashion Apparel

These are some extraordinary devices that i unquestionably use for SEO work. This is an extraordinary rundown to use later on.. http://birsarapsisesi.tumblr.com/

I appreciated perusing your articles. This is really an incredible read for me. classy clothing

This was really an interesting topic and I kinda agree with what you have mentioned here! Alexander Wang

Nice post thanks for sharing it would like to visit regularly on your blog keep sharing. catwalk show

Really it is very nice post. Best Ice Maker in 2017 | Ultimate Buying Guide for Top Ice Makers in Market For the Work Place

It is not necessarily regular that i include the option to ascertain a specific thing.chevy g20 car covers

I doubtlessly getting a charge out of every last bit of it and I have you bookmarked to look at new stuff you post. Fashion Apparel

Over 150 different designs and fragrances to choose from. Goats milk soap available. fall coats

the hammer with three fingers for the barrel, fired into the right temple. "It's three points. Take that to the head," Rasheed explained to anyone who actually needed an authorial parsing of its deep Jungian symbolism. Loftplan

I simply discovered this online journal and have high trusts in it to proceed. Keep up the considerable work, its elusive great ones. I have added to my top picks. Much obliged to You. 50s retro dresses