During our last game against Obras S.A., I was hearing a lot of this:
“Que pelota de mieeerda!”
“That ball is shit!”
“Que hija de puta que no quiere entrar!”
“That bitch of a ball doesn’t want to go in!!”
“La concha de su hermana..que mala suerte!!!”
“******* – what BAD LUCK!!”
And by the end of a terrible game, when we’d lost 43-30 even Cate’s comments on the game hinted at this bad luck:
“We have a reality here; Some of us have been playing for a short time and we have many things to work on. The truth is… the ring wasn’t in our favor tonight.”
I don’t believe that luck plays a major role in sports. I believe in practice…endless practice. Blood, sweat, and tears sort of stuff. Shooting again and again and again until you can do it with your eyes closed (or your arms fall off).*
That being said, I am probably not the best example. Although I train three times a week and play on my own time as well, I know that my life situation right now doesn’t allow a basketball drenched life. Maybe in another moment, or maybe it will never come.
Cate’s final words, at the end of a game, always makes me ponder.
“This is what always happens: we are winning and we get confident. We the start to completely lose focus. We need to work on being consistent with our concentration.”
I agreed with her on that point. I believe the best our team can do is practise not just physical drills, but concentration drills. Every day that goes by playing basketball, I am more and more convinced that the mental aspect way surpasses the physical in importance. Not just basketball, but any sport.
*I don’t know if it is true, but I’ve heard it said that Kobe Bryant, one of my favourite ball players, takes 1000 shots a day, to practise.