Sunday, May 16, 2010

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Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Seven Key Concepts All Point Guards Should Know

Came across this article today, which is written off a speech given by Dena Evans, former point guard at the University of Virginia.

Dena uses an acronym to describe the seven keys - RACECAR.

R A - Race the ball from Arc to arc.

C - Control

E - Eagerly hunt the paint

C - Cleverness

A - Arrum which is play on "air 'em"

R - Reminders (My favorite)


Monday, April 26, 2010

Steve Nash Showing Us All How To Be Better Teammates

Something I’ve noticed with some of the U17 and U19 soccer teams I train is their lack of interaction on the field, by way of communication, encouragement and just general “feel goodedness” (for lack of a better term) about playing the game of soccer with each other.

We as coaches are constantly striving to build team chemistry. Chemistry is a hard thing to define and you know it when you have it. I’ve been on some teams that I felt had good to great team chemistry and I recently discovered at an alumni game, that that chemistry doesn’t go away, even after a few years having gone by without seeing said teammates.

So what can you do as a player to be a better teammate and build more team chemistry? There may be no easy answer, but I would like to point you all in the direction of an article recently published on ESPN’s basketball blog, Truehoop.

The article and video is about Steve Nash and the amount of high fives he gives to teammates during a game. Though the video is done in a manner to be a little bit silly and poke fun at Nash slightly, the lessons are there for the taking.

Nash is quite an interesting NBA player. Definitely cut from a different mold than the typical NBA player, Nash can teach everyone involved in sports a thing or two about leadership and being a good teammate. For further proof of this, I encourage you to read the chapter about Steve Nash in Chris Ballard’s book “The Art of a Beautiful Game,” and this other article about Nash by Coach Steve Finamore.

A simple thing like handing out high-fives after good and bad plays (maybe more important the bad) can go a long way in helping someone’s confidence and overall team camaraderie. Keep the lessons coming Nashy.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

LeBron Posterizes James Johnson But Gets Help From Varejao

It's been a while since I've posted, but now with the NBA playoffs in full gear, I'm hoping to get some more posts up.

What I'm going to try is to pick out a play or two from a game and sort of break down some of the X's and O's of the play.

The first one I'm highlighting is LeBron James' monster throw down against the Bulls last night in Game Two.

Now LBJ does a lot of things right on this play. He's a superhuman athlete and really doesn't need the help of his teammates on most plays, he made that pretty clear last night. But if you watch closely there is a subtle assist from Anderson Varejao on this spectacular play.

Notice in the picture below: As LeBron gets isolated, the Bulls help defenders (mainly Joakim Noah and Luol Deng) are both in good position to help and seem like they are anticipating having to help.

Now, right before LeBron begins his move, Anderson Varejao flashes from the weakside to the center of the rim, seemingly to make himself available as an option for LeBron to pass to. Based on the timing of James' move in correspondance with Varejao's flash, I think this was only done to "seal" off Noah who would be trying to protect the rim on James dunk attempt.

The rest is done by James, who gets unbelievable seperation on a jab and rip through move. Secondly the elevation and ferocity with which he threw down that dunk makes me think that Noah was lucky he wasn't able to come over as a help defender. Knowing the kind of player Noah is and that he wouldn't back down from a challenge, he would have probably attempted to block that shot, and it would have been Noah and James Johnson on a poster, instead of just Johnson.

Here's how the play turned out in real time.

Sunday, December 20, 2009


Will be back in March for hoops blogging - stay tuned!

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Gilbert Arenas - Common Sense

I'm not usually one to criticize players or writers, but I did notice this today and felt compelled to put something down.

Now I've always been a fan of Gilbert Arenas, the player that is. He heats up quick and he plays with a fearlessness that I love.

A few years ago I came across Gil's blog and became a fan of Gilbert Arenas, the personality. He's quirky, pretty well spoken and entertaining. Plus, who can forget his sweet Adidas commercial about nobody believing in him, and proving doubters wrong. I love that he embodied that.

But, injuries mounted and production on the court slowed and Gilbert's act began running stale. Well that brings us to this year and a (hopefully) healthy Gilbert Arenas.

At the Wizards' media day, Michael Lee of the Washington Post uncovered this quote from Gil:

"The biggest thing he had to say was that he was done being an entertainer. No more Agent Zero. No more hibachi. No more antics. No more blogging. And he says he has no plans to get on Twitter. Arenas said he is focused only on playing basketball and being more a leader for the team."

Really Gil? It took four years for you to realize that. How about you are in the NBA and are get paid to produce on the court..not entertain fans off the court electronically. I'm just glad that he's finally realized it and I hope we see some of the player that he once was.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Michael Jordan Inducted Into the Hall of Fame

So what would the greatest basketball player of all time say when inducted into the Hall of Fame?

Well, he did what he does best..talked a lot of trash. But he did impart some wisdom at the end. Here was his closing quote:

The game of basketball has been everything to me. My refuge, my place I've always gone when I needed comfort and peace. It's been a source of intense pain and a source of most intense feelings of joy and satisfaction and one that no one can even imagine. It's been a relationship that has evolved over time and has given me the greatest respect and love for the game. It's provided me a platform to share my passion with millions, in way that I neither expected, nor could have imagined in my career. I hope that it's given the millions of people that I've touched the optimism and desire to achieve their goals through hard work, perseverance and positive attitude. Although I'm recognized with this tremendous honor of being in the basketball Hall of Fame. I don' look at this moment as the defining end of my relationship with basketball. It’s simply a continuation of something I started a long time ago. One day you might look up and see me playing the game at 50..oh don't laugh. Never say never. Because limits like fears, are often an illusion.

Pretty intense stuff.