New Castle News

Tim Kolodziej

March 20, 2014

Tim Kolodziej: Three lessons we can learn from ’Canes’ magical run


NEW CASTLE — “They play hard. ... They have an amazing will. They get a bunch of 50-50 balls and rebound the ball well. Defensively, they get after you.”

3) Focus on the process ...

A basketball game is nothing more than a series of possessions. It’s a fight card of 50-50 battles.

•Can you beat your man to the spot? It’s the difference between a block and a charge.

•Are you willing to dive on a loose ball before your opponent? One play can win you — or cost you — a game.

•Are you willing to “find a body and find the ball” on a rebound? Second shots are second chances at success.

•Are you willing to run the floor in transition even when you’re at the point of exhaustion? Just ask Malik Hooker and Stew Allen. A fast-break layup in the waning seconds of a game can be the difference.

You’ve got to look at your scraped-up knees, cut lip and jammed fingers as badges of honor.

They’re physical evidence that you were focused on “playing present” and not worried about an outcome.

In a 32-minute game, there are bound to be bad fouls, turnovers and missed shots. A perfect record doesn’t mean you’ve been perfect all season. It actually means you’ve been able to shake off your imperfections and focus on the next thing you can do to help your team.

Next play.

Play present.

Anything else is dwelling on the past or worrying about the future.

Just win ... the next possession.

That’s all you have control over.

“You did such a great job of focusing on this process,” Blundo told his team following Tuesday’s game. “You never focused on the outcome. The outcome just happened.”

Think you’re staring down a huge mountain today? Follow New Castle’s lead.

Those challenges are actually a blessing. Mountains are beautiful to look at. And they are meant to be CLIMBED.

True strength is built through resistance. One foot in front of the other. One step at a time. Don’t look down. Don’t look around. Just stay focused on navigating the next rock, the next obstacle.

Without even realizing it, you’re suddenly overwhelmed by a gorgeous view from the top.

The team standing at the peak of the mountain never just falls there. It’s a step-by-step trek.


Enjoying the journey.

Focusing only on what’s right in front of them.

That’s New Castle basketball.

And that’s not a bad way to get through this thing called life, either.


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Tim Kolodziej