Kashaune Mckinney is a 23 year old 193cm guard from Chicago that recently as a rookie played for the Southers Illinois Monarchs (ABA). He played at three colleges starting with Connors State JC (JUCO), Gillette College (JUCO) and finished at Robert Morris where he played a total of 64 games and as a senior played 36 games averaging 13.4ppg, 3.1rpg, 2.0apg, 1.6spg, FGP: 41.1%, 3PT: 31.9%, FT: 73.2%. He also took part at the Oklahoma City Thunder (Eurobasket Summer League in Portsmouth) playing 3 games averaging 17.3ppg, 2.0rpg, 2.0apg, 1.3spg. He spoke to German Hoops about basketball.
Thanks Kashaune for talking to German Hoops. Where are you at the moment and how has your summer been?
I’m in Chicago as of right now working out every day and networking I currently play in the chi league been to Vegas this year for the McNeil camp and then came back to play In the tbt
Officially you are not a rookie as you played last season for the Southers Illinois Monarchs (ABA). How much are you itching to start a professional basketball career in Europe like your ex teammate Diante Watkins?
I’m itching to play so bad I’m anxious and I’m more than ready I can’t wait till the first team gives me a chance
Germany would be a perfect place to play for you? What do you know about the country Germany and its basketball?
I know Germany is a good place to start off my career they have a lot of teams that I know that would love to have me if they knew me and my style of play
Do you have any friends playing in Germany besides Diante Watkins?
I have friends and family in Germany Rilwan Bakaree is one of my good friends
It is August now and teams in Europe are getting filled up for the upcoming season. What kind of an experience has it been for you in general testing the European market. Has there been interest and any offers since you came out of Robert Morris?
No just a lot of scams going on and etc I really don’t like that it’s discouraging but I was built for this. I spent a lot of my time went to Vegas twice. Last year won the gbsl no looks scored 45 at the Bridgewater camp no looks
What kind of experience was it playing last season for the Southers Illinois Monarchs (ABA)? What did you get out of this season besides the fact that you were close to home and family and friends could come out and see you play?
That the shot clock was different long quarters and I played with a smaller basketball. I also tried to play with Chicago steam they tried scamming me as well.
You played for three schools in four years with Connors State JC (JUCO), Gillette College (JUCO) and Robert Morris(NAIA). What was the most challenging thing in your college career that you never would have had just playing for one school?
To get over the fact I blew my chance to go to the university of Detroit mercy out of Gillette so I got over it and put all my energy into Robert Morris left there with a final 4 appearance and a degree in applied health science.
After two years in junior college, you made the jump to Robert Morris(NAIA) as a junior where you played two seasons. How difficult has it been accepting and dealing with the fact that you pretty much always had to prove yourself and play at lower college levels when you knew that you could of played at a higher level?
I like proving myself that’s the only thing I know until I get to where I want to be its challenging but I love it and it makes me a better player
The best example of great talent playing at a lower level was your ex teammate Diante Watkins who averaged 24ppg and 7,0apg as a senior. He came to Germany played two seasons in the third division and now will play in the second division for Leverkusen. Does a guy like Watkins make you want to keep working even harder to achieve success the way he did, because it is possible coming from a NAIA school?
Yes he showed me anything is possible after winning player of the year out of Robert Morris at 5’5
What was your sweetest memory with Diante Watkins on and off the court?
My sweetest memory is when Diante Watkins came into practice and ran a drill with us my junior season and I was guarding him. Another memory is when he found out I dropped 38 he came into the coaches office and watched the tape and told me to keep working and told me you have a nice game. Off the court me n Diante played at the chi league on the same team. He always came to hang out in my dorm so he can get ready to go to Germany after he came back from the okc workout. His accomplishments led me on to think anything is possibly especially him being 5’5 and I’m 6’4
In your senior year you helped lead Robert Morris to the NAIA final four. However Robert Morris lost to Midland university. What will always stand out most from this game that you will never forget?
That we weren´t deep enough and that we should of played some zone instead of man to man full court and they shot like 70 percent from 3 and you can’t beat any team that’s shooting like that for instance like golden state.
Would you rank your 38 points against Valpariso as your best game ever at any level?
Yes that’s the best performance I had in my career that game I was just trying to be seen and let scouts know I can play any where at any level if I had a chance
In the game against Valpariso you led all scorers with 38 points, but Robert Morris lost 90-82 and Lavone Dority led the opponent with 18 points to the win. Last season as a rookie Dority played in Germany for Kichheim in the second division while you were in the ABA. Is this another motivation for you to work harder because you know that you can play at that level?
Yes it is a motivation because I know for a fact he can’t guard me. We were just two individuals in two different situation. If I had went to Valpariso I know for a fact I would have got a shot at the NBA.
How did Al Bruehl prepare and groom you best for a professional basketball career?
Every day in practice I went hard and came in first in all the sprints. Othyus Jeffers went to the NBA out of Robert Morris and many guys came out of there and played professionally and that just motivated me because I know I can play professionally if not the NBA definitely overseas.
If you could describe yourself in a few sentences as to why you could help any team now how would you describe your game best?
My name is Kashaune McKinney. I am a 6’4 athletic combo guard that has a defensive mind set. I assist my team by getting loose balls, setting screens, and being vocal on the floor. I have the ability to spread the defense on offense and knock down the mid-range jumper with consistency.
Who won a one on one at Robert Morris you or Diante Watkins?
Me and Diante haven’t played but believe me that would be a good show if we were to ever play.
How does a normal workout day look like for you in the summer of 2015?
I start my workout at 10am until 2pm soon as I getto the gym I stretch then I do some form shooting for like 20 minutes with a partner. Then I start my work out dribbling and shooting then after each drill I got to make 5 consecutive lay ups while fatigue then make two free throws. So I can move on to the next spot of drill. After that if there’s enough guys in the gym we play 4 on 4 on 4 We play to 5. You gotta get a bucket and stop that’s 1. Soon as you hit game you shoot a free throw to validate it. But if you miss you drop to 3. Then I lift afterwards
What do you see the Chicago Bulls achieving this upcoming NBA season? Can they make a run in the east?
The Bulls will never make it past Lebron until they get a decent small forward that can average at least 20 a game
What is the state of Lebron James in 2015? Will he ever be mentioned in the same breath as Michael Jordan?
Lebron James will be Lebron James and he shouldn’t want to be someone else.He should create his own destiny and his own legacy and there will be never another Lebron James just like there will never be another MJ. Lebron is unique and one of a kind
What was the last movie that you saw?
Last movie I saw was “Parker” an action movie , from the beginning to the end it will keep you on your heels from the beginning to the end.
Thanks Kashaune for the chat