Ash Van Zant
Drawn by Vallhound, check him out he's awesome!
|No. 5 – Bangor Tides|
|Species||Raccoon ( Procyonidae )|
|Rock n' Roll, Shield|
November 7, 1999|
|Listed height||6 ft 6 in (1.98 m)|
|Listed weight||210 lb (95 kg)|
|FBA draft||2019 / Round: 1 / Pick: 6th overall|
|Selected by the Bangor Tides|
|Pro playing career||2019–present|
|2019 - present||Bangor Tides|
|Career highlights and awards|
|2022 Salary||$17 million|
|2023 Salary||$17.5 million|
|2024 Salary||$18 million|
|2025 Salary||$18 million|
|(OOC) Usage||Ask me before any use|
Ash's life began in a very normal sense, aside from his biological mother leaving him, his father and siblings for unknown reasons which still makes Ash bitter to this day, often stating "Some woman brought me into this world and just walked away. That's the long and short of it. Who the hell does that?". Ash's life began to take turns for the worse as at age 9 when he saw his older brother Kent die in a car accident, followed by the death of his father Carl to a drug overdose when Ash was merely 13, leaving him to vagrancy with his baby sister Suzanne. He often was left to resort to very sketchy means to keep themselves alive, from gambling on street basketball to theft, pickpocketing, and even assault when someone decided to try and stiff him on a bet. Often he found himself going hungry to keep Suzanne fed and happy. Eventually, he found him and Suzanne being bounced around in foster care. After a year, Ash was losing hope thinking he'd just age out eventually and have no shot of keeping him and his sister together. His luck took a positive turn for once however, as a single woman named Trudy Rodgers was willing to take both of them.
Ash did bond to his adoptive mother as did little Suzanne, Ash even taking her last name as his middle name as a show of love. However, things would get rocky again with Trudy getting sucker punched with a pay cut at work. Ash, hellbent on not going back into foster care and risking him and Suzanne getting separated took up some of his old habits of stealing and gambling on his own skills in pick-up ball...It was hard as before but if it kept the family together...so be it.
Growing up, he looked up to Marcus Knight of the Lone Stars. Even as a kid living on the streets, he knew of his life and times knowing that if Knight could turn his life around certainly there was hope for him. After being adopted he saved every coin he could toward a Marcus Knight jersey. It was hard to see him without it. To this very day he credits Marcus Knight as 'The Man Who Saved His Life'.
The First Step
One day after school days before his sixteenth birthday, Ash received a call from a law office claiming he had inheritance to collect. Initially he wasn't sure what to make of it but he went and collected the goods, Kent's guitar and songbooks as well as a box of his father's belongings...At first Ash wasn't sure what to make of the items, the guitar made sense...it was his brother's legacy after all but what was with the baseball memorabilia? Ash never remembered his father being into sports at all. As he began rummaging through the box he found a card which read Carl Van Zant...Ash had no clue why he never talked about his baseball days but it hit a nerve in him...he had all the genes that his father Carl had...maybe it could translate to basketball?
This event was a flashpoint, spurring Ash to call his brother's bandmates to reunite the band in his honor and up his game is basketball which the first step of that being joining his high school team.
High School (The Furious Fourteen)
In his sophomore year attending Rosewood High, Ash joined the basketball team the Rosewood Ravagers. He was tapped as a starter for his scrappy defense and smooth shot. On the court, he was usually designated as the third scoring option leading to a lower shot count but even on bad nights he was a steady presence, putting up an average of 8 points, 5 assists and 5 rebounds with a steal to go with it. Not a star stat line by any stretch but he rarely skewed from these numbers. It was also this year where Blake and Ash earned the duo nickname 'Sword and Shield' for their respective offensive and defensive roles in the team.
Come junior year, he found himself having to pick up more of the scoring slack between Blake Kelly coming into the season a bit out of shape and Nikki St. Claire dealing with an injury, He ended up bumping his points to about 11 per game on average and now spending some time in the Shooting Guard slot, showing if needed he can go to work. With his improvements and Blake and Nikki returning to form, The Rosewood Ravagers found themselves going to compete for the state title. They ended up losing in the quarter-final but this did get colleges looking at the Ravagers in general.
Senior year came around and Ash felt himself sinking back into his old third option spot on the roster, going down to about 9 points a game but upping his game in the rebound and blocking category recording an average of 8 rebounds and just over a block per game. His defensive prowess might not have made him the flashiest player but he was the defensive backbone of the team with helped the Ravagers compete for a state title once again, this time however the Rosewood Ravagers found themselves winning the title with Ash getting the game winning shot in game five of the finals series. This is what created the Ravagers' legend of 'The Furious Fourteen'
Ash now found himself thinking of something he though he'd never think of...which college was he gonna attend? Initially he considered joining straight from high school but he considered if he wanted to be spotted by scouts he figured a short collegiate stint might be best. He did recieve offers ranging from NC Wolfpack to UFLA, offering him things from a big stage to being in a storied school with a long history of champions...but they were all role playing offers at best. Eventually, he decided to attend Vanderbarn University partially to be somewhat close to home but strongest of all...they offered to make him the star piece of their team, to let him truly shine. He took up a one year certificate program for music, considering he never planned on going to college in the beginning it was a notable upgrade.
Playing for Vanderbarn, Ash found himself bounced between starting at the SF and sometimes the SG position. He brought that same steady presence he brought to the Rosewood Ravagers, but still showing notable improvements, bringing his averages up to 16.8 points on 55% Field goals made, 7.1 rebounds, 6.8 assists, 2.1 steals, and 1.3 blocks a game often backed up by his teammate and friend Lucy Jo Heitkemp. The two were quite the pair, between tricky plays and excellent synergy. Even with their first round exit from the FCAA that year Ash still proved he could ball and the high spike in stats were a nice bump to his draft stock. He even said himself "We were a low seed this year, it's nice we even got to the FCAA tourney at all. So no shame in our game, end of the day we're just happy to be here."
His basketball season wasn't the only standout spot of his college time, as he also dabbled in a little theater, landing a supporting role in Vanderbarn's production of Hobbes and Ramenstein's Cinderella and even landing the leading role in Vanderbarn's production of Vile Dead: The Musical. Given he was headlining a band, the stage was something of a second home to him.
Needless to say, as soon as his certificate requirements were cleared, Ash declared for the FBA draft, thinking he was ready to take the next step towards his chapter in the Van Zant legacy.
Ash managed to enter the league on a very fortunate note. Unlike most lottery selections, despite having slid to the back end of the lottery Ash found himself being drafted by the then-defending champion Tides. And to top that off he found himself added to the starting lineup. Sure, it was his secondary position but hey, if the champs wanted to give him the spot...wasn't gonna complain. He felt very happy being in the Tides' company, being among champions the least of said factors. The team felt like family to him, he just...gelled well with everyone, especially with the Captain Lance Wildfyre who's he regularly calls his brother. To this day quoted as saying "Me slippin' on draft night to the Tides...almost like it was written in the stars, me bein' a Tide."
The season was however rather rocky, between roster injuries and Ash flying a little off the handle at times one incident getting him fined. With the Tides' first round exit, Ash felt as the one major roster change he was ultimately responsible for the lost chance to defend the title. Even though he'd had a more than admirable rookie campaign, being a big part in bolstering the Tides' defense, he ended up coming just short of Rookie of the Year and missing out on the chance to partake in the 2020 Olympic games even if it was considered a longshot he still felt cheated several times over...It wounded him. Spited, scorned and screwed over in his mind at least, he was quoting as saying "I have nothing to celebrate!" at season's end.
2020-2021 Season: To Win and Lose...
Walking into the season on a very murky offseason featuring several ugly moments and a disappearance, Ash had a very clear mission...Win, everything or nothing. Whatever would make things better...that had to be it.
It was...a wild ride. Notable moments including him throwing an elbow in the fave of hated rival Leon Delmont on top of other minor spats. Not to say there weren't bright spots however, Ash would get named to the 3 point contest and All Star game, joining Lance Wildfyre in his final All Star week. Something that...made him feel a bit better about things, in spite of the onus hanging over the season.
Now as the second lead scorer on the Tides, they'd jump into the 3rd seed headed to playoffs. However...seemed things weren't in favor. Between a resurgant Alphas squad and some untimely injuries, including one to Ash's foot in game one they'd find themselves losing in an upset. Everything...everything just seemed to crumble to dust in front of him. The fact that Lance, the only one he'd call brother was hanging it up on that note...that was the true dagger in the raccoon's heart. Even with the friendships on the Alphas, it was too much hurt for him to bear. After he'd picked himself up he could been seen snapping a bit at them as he walked off...leaving many to ponder if those'd be the last images of Ash as a Tide...losing his cool and crying on the court of Faragami Park...
However his work wasn't unrecognized...Turns out adding the best parts of the rabbit's game to his was just the trick, as he would find himself winning the Most Improved Player award...at last, an item for his trophy case. To see the tears of joy from him that night, an emotion he rarely showed to the public. Even with questions on his future lingering, This was someone no one could take away.