Embarrassing story from my high school playing days

Back in my high school days, an experience on the court humbled me in the most unexpected way and taught me a critical lesson about player development...

Something that almost all players lack today that's preventing them from reaching their full potential.

Today I want to share that story with you.

When I was a senior, I was one of 10 players selected for the all-star team at a team summer camp which had over 50 teams participating.

And before you think I'm saying that to brag, listen to what happened next.

My confidence was sky high as I walked into the gym to play in a church summer league the following week, and I saw a lot of the usual suspects.

(The opposing team had a couple of all-state basketball players who were lightning-quick guards with tight handles and smooth shots.)

But there was one guy in particular who caught my eye on the opposing team:

A 50-year-old player who stuck out like a sore thumb as he wore two knee braces and moved with a limp.

Who is this guy?? I remember thinking.

To my surprise, I was assigned to guard him, and I couldn't help but underestimate his abilities.

Ready to show off, I eagerly awaited the opportunity to dominate him.

Unfortunately for me, that's not the way things went at all.

In the very first play, he outmaneuvered me with impeccable footwork to create space and get open in the high post.

Then he nailed me with a lightning-quick pass fake that shifted me out of the position.

Then bam! He nailed the jumper right in my face.

And it only went downhill from there!

While I can't remember the exact point total, he scored at least 30 points while I was lucky to have managed 10 points, leaving me to endure a car ride home filled with my brother Jeff's laughter.

After seeing how ticked off I was at myself for getting absolutely dominated...

Jeff said, "Don't worry. He did that to me the first time I played him too."

Although my ego took a hit that day, the experience taught me a valuable lesson about the importance of basketball IQ that's important for all players/coaches to keep in mind:

One of the best ways to learn how to play the game and improve basketball IQ is to play against older (sometimes much older), experienced players.

Because it's one thing to have a coach tell you to do something...

But to physically be on the court and see somebody executing high IQ plays and to experience somebody beating your butt with a savvy approach to the game...

That's the ultimate teacher!

And in today's world, many young players today spend too much time playing structured games against peers of the same age, who often lack the basketball intelligence it requires to be truly great at this game.

So basically, low IQ play perpetuates itself.

However, when competing against older players who may not possess lightning-fast speed or soaring jumps, you discover that basketball IQ can be your secret weapon.

Creating space, mastering footwork, changing pace, and executing smooth pass fakes become vital skills for success.

Even a young Larry Bird recognized the value of this concept...

He didn't play summer AAU basketball, but he played pickup games against opponents two to three times his age and is widely regarded as one of the highest IQ players ever.

So remember, becoming an exceptional basketball player requires practicing your game and developing skills...

It also demands an environment where players can learn how to play the game and develop a high level of basketball IQ.

And if you can combine the two, you'll transform into an unstoppable force on the court!

Want to play against all sorts of competition, ages, and skill levels this summer?

Then consider registering for one of our remaining Breakthrough Basketball Camps with 300+ locations all over the country!

You can see the full camp schedule and register HERE.


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