A couple of weeks ago we wrote a blog about how to succeed in basketball tryouts so that you can make the team. Making the team however is just the first step. Now that you’re on it, you probably have the desire to contribute in a meaningful way. In competitive sports, not everybody is going to get the chance to play a lot and that is okay. Everyone on the team is still contributing to the success of the team, even if it’s just in practice. However, we still want to help you maximize your chances of getting on the court and contributing in games.
Coaches love players that play smart and patiently. Playing smart means that you should try to take good shots and let the game come to you. In both practices and during the limited time you have in games, you have to make sure to make the right reads. Forcing shots and turning the ball over is a quick way to get benched. Instead, you want to take open shots and make the right passes to open teammates. You also want to make sure you’re following the playbook on both defence and offence. From years of experience playing basketball as a youth, I’ve seen players that are less talented but play smartly beat out players that are more talented. You can be a talented player but if you’re playing out of control in games then a coach isn’t going to want to play you.
Put Forth Effort Defensively
If you focus hard on the defensive end, a coach is going to want to play you so long as you are playing smartly on offence. Although the stat sheet doesn’t always tell the story, good coaches will take notice of the impact you’re having on the defensive end. If you are able to get key defensive stops and force turnovers then you will be having a huge impact on changing the momentum of the game. The willingness to play defence also shows mental toughness and grit.
Always Be Engaged In Practice
If you don’t get enough playing time within games, practices are where you are going to have to show that you deserve to play. To do so, you have to make sure you attend and even show up early to every practice. You have to be engaged in each and every drill and make sure you know your team’s playbook from front to back. The coaches have to be able to tell that you have a strong desire to play by seeing that you’re putting forth your best effort in practice.
Ask Your Coach What You Need to Improve
If you are unsure as to what you need to do to get more playing time or want more insight into the mind of your coach then feel free to ask them. Approach them after practice in a non-confrontational way and ask them what you need to improve in order to get more minutes. That way you can focus on the specific things they mention in practice or whenever you get the chance to work on your game.
Register for TAC Force Academy
At our basketball academy, we offer competitive teams for youth to try out on. We also offer camps, weekly lessons, house leagues and other programming to help you maximize your basketball potential. We want to help you succeed and become a solid contributor to whatever team you decide to play on. To learn more about TAC Force Academy’s programming, click on the button below.