Sunday, November 20, 2011

A Likely Story: Why Shabazz Wears the Rat Tail


It's the burgeoning topic of the young season for UConn. Ryan Boatright's eligibility? No. Alex Oriakhi's slow start? Uh-uh. Andre Drummond's foul shooting? Nope.

Shabazz Napier's "rat tail" that he's growing on the back of his head. A lot of people have been wondering about it, and some opponents have even been making fun of him about it.

The reason for the tail?

“One of my closest friends had passed away. He had braids, so it’s kind of a tribute to him. Not a lot of people know that," Napier said after Sunday's triple-double.

His friend's name was Ernest Likely, who died "a while back," according to Napier. "It was a homicide."

So there ya have it. You heard it here first. No need to make fun of it anymore, if you're an opposing fan or player. (Oh, and I have no idea why the blog suddenly looks like this. Hopefully it's something someone fixes ... soon).

“I might cut it soon, because a lot of teams say something funny about it," Napier said. "It irritates me, because they don’t understand where I’m coming from. The (Coppin State) fan base today was talking about it so much. I’m doing it out of someone who I love so much and died."

Napier continued:

“When he died, it took a lot out of me. It was one of the hardest things of my life. I’ve just been contemplating whether or not I should cut it. Teams try to make fun of it. Knowing myself, I might get ticked off one day and get in someone’s face about it. It’s something real deep, and I don’t appreciate a lot of people talking bad about it. Not a lot of people understand where I come from, so you can’t really blame them.”

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