Shakeem “Shak” Adams was a star at Florida Gulf Coast University, a three-time ASUN First Team performer who scored 23 goals with 16 assists for the school. His professional career had a storybook beginning as the Nashville, Tenneessee native was drafted in the 2020 MLS SuperDraft by his hometown club, Nashville SC. “It was a great feeling overall that I was able to get drafted and it was even better feeling it was from my hometown,” Shak told BGN.
But, things took a turn for Adams as he was released before the season by the club. He said, “It’s never going to be the best feeling for anyone to get released from a team but I didn’t want to dwell on being released take a toll on my play.”
He was signed by FC Tucson of USL League One and became a key player last season. After using the time the season was delayed to get used to the dry heat in Arizona, Adams led the club with four goals and added two assists. “What helped me find the most success last season was when I would play faster and more aggressively on the offensive side,” the speedy winger explained. “For me to get better I need to keep trying to be aggressive throughout the entirety of the season and not hit the wall of complacency.”
2021 will give him another chance to impress with FC Tucson. He said, “For FC Tucson to pick up my option this year was a great acknowledgment of how well I played last season.” After finishing sixth in USL League One last season, Adams is confident in the 2021 squad. “We have all the right pieces this year from top to bottom to be able to have plenty of success and make a push when it comes to playoff time,” Shak explained. “The fans of FC Tucson can be excited to see a polished team on both sides of the ball. Especially, on the offensive end, we have some talented players who will for sure get the fans something to cheer for!”
— USL League One (@USLLeagueOne) September 6, 2020
Adams and FC Tucson will kick off their 2021 schedule on May 1st on the road vs. South Georgia Tormenta FC. While he looks to help the club do special things this season, still only 22 years old, Shak will be ready if another chance in MLS comes along. “As a player who is still young, there will be more opportunities and the next time one comes across at the higher level I’m going to take it and run with it,” Shak said.
That type of mindset can be traced back to Shak’s favorite athlete: the late, NBA legend Kobe Bryant. Adams said, “Kobe means a lot to me especially when it comes to how I approach the game. He always wanted to perfect his craft and be the best player that he could be day in and day out.”
“For me, I try to be the best version of myself that I can be and keep striving and pushing to be great.”
He always wants to the world around him to become the best version of itself. Adams said he’s said to see all of the videos coming up with racism, social injustice, and racial inequality. “I don’t really talk about it in a public setting but I do try my best to do what I think can help in private,” he said.