Next Level (Part 1)

What is the definition of a high level, elite level person and basketball players? Can you spot it?

I hear the term ELITE and NEXT LEVEL everyday. People say it in conversations or I read about it, especially in the basketball world. Sure, it’s fun, it’s exciting. High level engages us without a lot of intentional work from you. There are elite players, teams, movies, meals, pastors, books, women, men and kids. But what I’m CURIOUS about how do you develop it? How does one get to this level?

That’s the question almost all coaches and parents ask. How can I get to another level? THAT IS WHAT I’M FIRED UP ABOUT!


Every WNBA/NBA player is ELITE, its just in their nature. You don’t get to the Association without having an elite mind, body and game. Working out a player like Terry Rozier or spending time teaching and talking with a Kevin Eastman, John Lucas, Cheryl Reeves, Ray Allen or Manu Ginobili is just on ANOTHER LEVEL. It just is!

Many people in their lifetime may never experience being around NBA/WNBA or even high level college basketball players. However, I think you can develop one or two, just do what you do. 

Call it nature or call it nurture if you are self aware enough. Don’t get distracted by the social media manipulated “shiny objects.” I promise you there is HIGH LEVEL play in your gym and high level business people in our area. A middle school team or players can display it, a highschool coach can show it. There are some fantastic  cultures all over the World in clubs and grassroots basketball. They may be young and inconsistent, but they demonstrate some action and behavior at a high level. It does not always come from WNBA/NBA players. 

It doesn’t matter where I am in the world, I ALWAYS have to set the culture. I have to get the players, coaches, organizers, parents thinking and acting at a high level. I do this by my using my Systematic Curriculum. Below is a short PDF:


If you have the time, if you can fit this into your program, you will give every player the TOOLS TO BE ELITE AND HIGH LEVEL. 

To the players that are reading this. Before wanting to be elite, get exposure, get ranked or get a college scholarship, add the below skill set to your game. 

Here is the abbreviated version of my foundation and philosophy on player development. 

Two main jobs of a coach & how a player can use basketball: 

1) Teach players REAL basketball


2) Give players the tools to be successful in LIFE 

– players use basketball to improve your life, your family life and your community 


1.Teach Players a move and a counter. Players add a move and counter to your game every season you play. 

A. With the bounce (off dribble)

B. With the catch (off triple threat)

C. Off the cut by yourself 

D. Off the screen (using one & setting one)

E. With the Finish (off 1 foot & off 2 feet)

**Remember, the end result is either a shot, foul or pass, pass, pass. Most of these moves will result in you making a play for someone else because you draw two to you. 

2.Teach players the most important fundamental skills. Players do these simple things better than anyone else! That’s what great ones do. Consistency in Simplicity 

A. Ball Handling and Dribbling 

B. Driving Downhill and Uphill

C. Passing 

D. Finishing 

E. Shooting Form and Shooting 

– off bounce, off cut, off catch

F. Cutting/ Moving with Out Ball 

G. Using and Setting Screens 

  1.  Application

– Use stationary & moving drills 1 on 0, 2 on 0

– use drills with and without a ball

      2.  Teaching Methods

Show and tell properly

– Correct mistakes, celebrate the correct (Praise right, correct wrong)

– Get consistent, productive repetitions

– Encourage productivity vs manipulated adversity. Get game shots, in game action, at game speed vs chaos and pressure. 

– Pressure can be applied by coach, defense, time, and/ or score 

**Obviously footwork is incorporated into all seven (7) skills!**

3. Teach players the most important team skills 

Players: you play a TEAM sport. Embrace and work on being a great teammate. That workout/that game/that season, it’s FAMILY(Forget About Me I Love You)

1) Spacing Concepts 

2) Ball Movement Concepts 

3) Player Movement Concepts

4) Drive and Kick Concepts 

5) Screening Angles and Concepts  


– I use 2 on 0, 3 on 0, 2 on 1 , 3 on 2, 2 on 2 , 3 on 3 drill situations. 

– Players must strive for perfection with no defense 

– Incorporate decision making into drills with reads and reactions. 

**Teammates must TALK and TOUCH. Celebrate one another, hold each other accountable


Part two is coming next week. I write about players body and mind. Stay tuned!
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