Articles

I write about the art and science of player development. New articles are sent to my email newsletter first.

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Closeouts vs. Contesting

A good coaching friend is hunting for a “sticky” term to offer up to his players for how they should contest shots. How would you answer his query? Searching for a “sticky” adjective to #teach our players how they should contest shots…? @PGCbasketball @CoachBobWalsh @coachwoodley @DrewHanlen @CoachBobStarkey @BCCoachStevens @SefuBernard @CoachJimBoone @kawhileonard @UVAMensHoops — Sam Ferry …

Basketball is NOT Basketball

There are very few absolutes in basketball. (To be honest, the only one that I can think of is: High score wins!) One of the dangers or blind spots we all have is that our perspective is influenced by our experiences—and the story we tell ourselves about those experiences. It’s like being a frog at …

The Iceberg Illusion & Why Mistakes Matter

Icebergs have two parts: what people see (above the surface) and what people don’t see (below the surface). Success Is An Iceberg We often get mesmerized by someone’s above the surface success and don’t factor in all the below the surface opportunity-costs they paid to achieve that success. This is the ‘iceberg illusion’. It’s been a …

Vision Combined With Technique Is The Great Equalizer

Milos Teodosic has been dropping these kinds of dimes for years. What he has improved, and what isn’t readily available to every player, is how he passes (e.g. underhand scoop pass, wide body hook-wrap-pass-with-spinology, etc). Those are “next level,” yet there’s one thing that he does consistently that is available to *all* players: what he …

Permissionless Rather Than Positionless Basketball

Many refer to it as POSITIONLESS play. Years ago, while working with Canada Basketball, we had referred to it as developing the ‘global’ player (i.e. players that could shoot, pass, and dribble from all positions). Perhaps, better said, it’s PERMISSION-LESS… players are no longer seeking permission to initiate from multiple positions, in multiple ways. Perhaps, …

8 Game-Like Situations

Every coach has been in the frustrating situation where their athletes don’t do, in a game, the things that they worked on during practice. There’s the common refrain bellowing from sidelines throughout the basketball world: “C’mon! We worked on that!” If you’re looking for a solution, start with you… Is This A Game-Like Drill? This is …