What’s up, #FlightNation!!!
We lost against Serbia yesterday. It was such a crazy train wreck, as we started off super sluggish and got down by 15 in the first quarter. It was the second game of a back to back, with a 4 hour bus ride before.No excuses though. I think about all the road trips the NBA players do, and we really cannot complain. This is what it takes to be at the next level.
For anyone that wants to go overseas to play basketball, I strongly encourage you to go on a tour. Our guys (including me) are learning first hand what it’s like to play in another country. Sure, you’ll likely be a Rock Star (especially if you are a tall basketball player), and you’ll be getting a pretty good check to only “play” basketball fir a living, but there’s a lot that goes with all that. Language barriers, food differences, travel and hotel changes (it’s not always a 4-5 star hotel), and, probably the biggest of all…high pressure.
We are 1-3 so far, and the expectations of American players and teams is to win. We’ve been so dominant in basketball around the world that anything less than that standard is not enough. As a coach, it’s tough because you cone up with plans, adjust to scenarios and situations, and guide your team to victory. Coaches cannot play though. As a player turned coach, this sucks sometimes. You can’t coach effort, you can’t properly explain why the little things matter (opening up to the ball on pick and rolls, staying wide defensively, chasing a man to box out instead of jumping after the ball while rebounding, etc.). That stuff defines a player’s manhood. Players that make it overseas and as a professional are those that prescribe to doing those little things on a very consistent basis.
As I said, I hate to lose. Losing with this added pressure though…it’s so frustrating. At least we have the next two days to get back right. We are traveling to Beijing today. I’ll keep you up to date!
Until next time…