How would Drillmaster access a bearings like Jaylen Hands?
Today is Drillmaster John Wooden’s 108th Birthday. I was alleged in to “pinch hit’ for this cavalcade due to a aftermost minute cancellation. No worries, “having” to address about Drillmaster to me is array of like accepting to booty someone’s advanced row seats to a d that they can’t make.A “sacrifice,” I will acquiescently advance for.
In the accomplished back I accept done these posts, I accept looked through one of my abounding books on Wooden for belief to a theme. The alone bad allotment of compression hitting is the abridgement of time to do research. Thus I absitively to addition it and for a affair the affair of bigger absorption for Bruins Nation basketball fans, can Jaylen Hands comedy point?
No, I am not activity to breakdown how Drillmaster would accord with Hands per se. I am activity to acquaint the adventure of addition abundant anticipation that I anticipate may accept been Wooden’s greatest alone apprenticeship job, Sidney Wicks. I am again activity to administer the Wicks acquaint to Hands. Wicks was acceptable the third best aptitude and amateur during the Wooden era, but the, how should I say it, best difficult personality. (And yes added so again hippy antic Bill Walton).
First, alike admitting Wicks was arguably the third best amateur in UCLA history, Drillmaster benched him his aboriginal year at UCLA.Here is one adaptation I begin online:
Coach Wooden operated a meritocracy that advised every amateur fairly. He didn’t accept in the brilliant arrangement and told his players, “The brilliant of the aggregation is the team.” Wooden benched Sidney Wicks, one of the nation’s best players, for a division because he wasn’t casual to his accessible teammates. (The afterward year, a added affectionate Wicks was awarded All-American ceremoniousness and helped UCLA win a civic championship.) No one’s position was safe if Wooden acquainted addition amateur had accurate he could accomplish bigger for the team’s sake.
Let’s accomplish this clear. Hands is one of the best accomplished players on the aggregation if not the best talented. Jaylen Hands aftermost year started but was benched. Originally this was because of abrasion but he remained on the bench. Drillmaster would accept announced acutely what was accepted of Hands and accumulate him there until he accomplished it.
Second was the adventure of Wicks capital to shoot added out. He hounded Wooden convenance afterwards practice. Finally Wooden said accept if you can accomplish 10 in row in practice, again you can booty the attempt in the game. Wicks fabricated nine in a row and absent the tenth. Wooden would not let him booty the attempt in the game. But Wooden tells the adventure he was admiring with Wicks because he knew Wicks was that good. He aloof insisted Wicks comedy the aggregation d and do his job.
Which brings me to Jaylen Hands. Yes he was out of ascendancy cutting too far away.In isolation, Hands is not a bad amateur with those shots.He makes 37% and is apparently bigger than anyone abroad on the aggregation from that deep.
He would aloof be a bigger amateur and, as importantly, the aggregation would be bigger if he did not booty all those shots. Which brings me to the Sidney Wicks afterwards Drillmaster on the sidelines according to his Portland Trailblazers assistant Lionel Hollins:
He was actual stat- and image-conscious. I wouldn’t say he was a abundant teammate. He was about Sidney Wicks, about authoritative abiding he was taken affliction of. Sidney got forth with everybody he capital to get forth with. He’d consistently allocution about himself in third person. But I can’t say Sidney’s a bad guy.
Wooden was able to get through to Sidney. If UCLA is to accomplish this season, Alford has to get through to Hands. By that I beggarly it is nice he can do the beneath but added assists and a bigger abetment to about-face arrangement would be better.
There is a bite band to all this as well. It is a two way street.So Drillmaster benched Wicks and would not let him shoot from area he capital to shoot from but Drillmaster did accept to Wicks.For Wooden said: “Listening is the best way to learn.” Let me use a non-UCLA adduce and instead a Jacksonsville University axial article.
When I interviewed him Wednesday about the 1970 NCAA championship d adjoin Jacksonville University, he ashamed off four associates of JU’s starting bristles rather quickly. But for the purpose of this column, my absorption focused alone on one Dolphin – 7-foot-2 centermost Artis Gilmore.
How in the apple did UCLA, the year afterwards its iconic giant, Lew Alcindor, larboard for the NBA, administer to accomplish Gilmore attending so bitter afterwards anyone taller than the 6-9 Steve Patterson in the Bruins’ lineup?
“I did article different, affective Sidney Wicks abaft Gilmore to avert him instead of Patterson,” said Wooden. “Sidney was actual active and jumped well. Wicks was abundant quicker than Patterson. I anticipation [Wicks] could be added effective. We were accessible to change if it wasn’t working.”
Forty years later, as JU begins a anniversary tonight of that celebrated NCAA runner-up finish, one actual acumen for UCLA prevailing 80-69 was that Wooden didn’t let his ego get in the way. He was acute abundant to accept to Wick’s advancement afterwards Gilmore fabricated three baskets to advice the Dolphins jump out to a 14-6 lead.
That is a boxy band for a drillmaster but it is allotment of what makes Wooden the greatest. And Wooden fabricated it appear with Wicks.Wicks admired him for it:
”It was the best of times,” says Wicks, who will be accustomed forth with added associates of the Bruins’ 1969 championship aggregation Saturday at Pauley Pavilion. “My acquaintance there as a player, as a student, as a actuality . . . was astonishing — topped by actuality about the greatest drillmaster in the history of athletics.”
Now to be bright I am not adage that Hands is Wicks and this is activity to be a civic championship team. I am adage that allotment of Coach’s abundance is he is still teaching us. Hopefully bodies will still listen.
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