Kareem Reid put his travel plans on hold for a chance to play in the Tri-State Classic title game. The former St. Raymond and Arkansas star was supposed to travel to France to start working with his team on Saturday, but told them he planned on staying in New York to play for the crown with Dancy Power.
In order to keep himself out of the sky for another day Reid had to lead his squad past a veteran Bad Boys team in the semifinals to land the elusive birth.
The explosive 5-foot-11 point guard didn’t disappoint, scoring 19 of his 24 points in the second half of an 86-81 come-from-behind victory Friday night in Harlem. He did so with rapper Fat Joe, a close friend and huge fan, in attendance.
The possibility didn’t look good early as the Bad Boys led by nine at the half, but Dancy Power started chipping away at the differential behind Reid. B J McFarland, who scored 17 points, gave Dancy Power the lead for good on a 3-pointer from the left side with 1:20 remaining in the game. Reid, who was nicknamed “The Best Kept Secret” since he was 14 years old, then stripped the ball from Bad Boys guard Abdul (Magic) Mills and went in for an uncontested layup to make it 82-79. Alexis Foyle added 21 points. Mills scored 15 of his 20 points on 5-for-5 shooting from behind the arc in the first half for Bad Boys.
“That’s a hard team,” Reid said. “They play with each other in every tournament. We expect them to be good. We just had to keep our composure and rebound. We knew we were going to wear them down.”
After he gets his shot at the title against either Ooh Way Records or Money Train, he will return to Vichy of the French Pro A league for his second season. The Razorbacks all-time leader in assists, who got invited to the New Orleans Hornets training camp in 2003, bounced around the fringe of the NBA for years.
He played with the Arkansas RimRockers of the ABA, the Asheville Altitude of the NBA Development League, Grand Rapids Hoops of the CBA and the Richmond Rhythm in the IBL.
Reid, who won a city and state title with St. Raymond as a junior, also spent time with the Harlem Globetrotters and in the USBL. He has since decided it’s time to take his game overseas.
“It got to the point where I turned 30 that I knew I had to give up my NBA dream and start raising money for my family,” Reid said.
Finally letting go of his boyhood dream was not easy, that’s why he tried for so long and for so hard to reach it.