Basketball is such a subjective sport. How it is played, coached, how people see and prepare for it. To be successful in any aspect of basketball whether it be as a player, coach, front office person, etc you need not only to enthrall yourself in it but also need a little luck as well.
I'm not a person who lives by daily quotes from famous people, to be completely honest I think a lot of those quotes that I see on my timeline is smoke and mirrors. When working with players its not about tricking them into working harder by giving them some pearls of wisdom from a philosopher. It's about being consistent with one or a couple of messages and following through with that message multiple times daily.
As a player you truly need to fall in love with the routine that it takes to be great. Not every player has it in their DNA physical or mentally to be great, but you can compete and be work to develop a routine daily to get you to the highest level that your physical and mental can take you. Everyone wants to tweet about and talk about how hard they want to work to achieve their dreams, very few follow though with those statements.
Throughout my career in basketball I come across a lot of different basketball players from all walks of life. Some are NBA All Stars, a lot are very good pros, many are on the cusp of being good,some (probably over 50%) are just average.
Everyone's drive and work ethic are different. As a coach you have in your mind what type of mindset that you want the players that you are working with to have. You will have your heart broken by this thousands time, but you just pick up the pieces and move to the next player. One player that I had the opportunity to work with many times is a player by the name of John Jenkins. John brings a special focus to his preparation. His workouts are to the point, streamlined, and extremely organized. I have a level of respect for John because he respects his preparation and values his time. He gets up large amount of game type shots in a small amount of time. There isn't a lot of talk, just game specific movements that he is preparing to help him get to the highest level that he can get to. He doesn't waste time with nonsense that he won't be using in a game like you see of many.
John has had a solid career in the NBA for Atlanta, Dallas, and Phoenix and is currently in Spain playing in one of the most competitive leagues in international basketball. The first thing any coach, teammate, or executive that's come in contact with John would tell you is that he has a tremendous work ethic, great teammate, and consummate professional. After that they will tell you about his high level shot making ability for anywhere in the gym. When working with players at any level those are the things that you want to instill with everyone that you work with. It's great to have talent , but if you have the other things that will put you in position to stay relevant it gives you the complete package.
As I was thinking about something to write today, John popped up into my head for some reason and wanted to share my time spent with him. The video that I posted on the top is a web series that John setup chronicling his off season. I suggest any player or coach that is trying to learn what a true pro is, get as much as you can on him on the web and study up. John will always be one of my favorite players to work with and wish him nothing but the best.
Here is a highlight go a game vs the OKC Thunder. As you can see he maximizes his shot making with the ability to make simple basketball plays and reads. Since defenders have to respect his shot making it frees him up to be able to drive the ball in the paint to pull up, get to the rim, or force two defenders on the ball to make a play for someone else.
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