In our final week of practice before our first game of the regular season, the local schools took trips. This made me realize how young we actually are, as despite having 14 players on our current roster (plus a 15th out with an injury), we did not have more than seven players at a practice until everyone returned from his trips on Friday. Seven players is a bad number for running a good practice, especially in a gym with six baskets. […]
The week started with a game, so there was no time to practice any of our issues from the weekend’s game. We started off in the lead, despite several missed lay-ups and free throws, so I thought we would eventually be okay. I took out one starter because he looked like he was sleep-walking, and after the first quarter, he was the only one who I felt was competing 100%. The game just got worse and worse, and we lost by 20. We largely played the same way as we did on the weekend, we just faced a better opponent. […]
Another week, and more missed practices. One player was ill, one player was suffering from the elbow to his jaw from the weekend, two players missed because of travel/work/school, and another left a practice when he caught an elbow to his eye and had to go for stitches. Therefore, there was not a lot of tactics/strategy at practice this week. […]
This afternoon, I conducted a basketball clinic for children who had never played basketball. I knew that it would be a challenge when the boys and girls ran around throwing and kicking balls into the handball/futsal goals prior to the start. The children wore F.C. Barcelona jerseys and handball shoes. This was different than doing previous clinics with beginners in India where the children were happy for any activity. These were children with choices, and they had made their choice not to play basketball. […]
Last weekend’s three games in 18 hours certainly had lingering effects. On Monday, we talked about the events of the weekend, and I handed out the 24-hour Athlete information to the players. I asked the players how they felt, and they were tired, so we had a short practice. By our next practice (Wednesday), we were missing guys due to injuries (knee that swelled up after knocking knees, and returning pain from a foot injury suffered last season) and illness. Combined with absences due to work and a funeral, and we could barely practice mid-week in what I had intended to be our more intense practices of the week. […]
During a form shooting drill my my u20 team last night, I walked over to a player and asked about his ankle.
“When did you hurt your ankle?
“It’s fine,” he answered.
“When did you hurt it?”
“Last year, but it’s fine now,” he reassured me.
“It’s affecting your performance,” I said.
Bad week. On Monday, our hardest worker tore his Achilles tendon in the middle of practice. With his loss, our bench is substantially smaller. We have now lost four of the team’s top seven players from last season, and added only two new players plus youth players. The team only played six players consistently last season, so the youth players are basically rookies. The player who was injured also filled a number of gaps, as he could serve as a starting SG or a back-up PG, as he is our second best ball handler. Now, all of our back-up guards are 18 or younger. […]