Friday, May 29, 2009

Functional Player

Last Tuesday night, i was invited by a friend of mine to play pick-ups with the Hong Kong CitiBank basketball team. I had not seen this friend for at least one and a half years since the end of 2007. He is an awesome player with size and dead-eye mid-range. He does have some rainbow touch and i always enjoy playing with this guy.

When he asked me if i could play that night, i was like yeh man, i would love to see how good those Citibank guys are and whether i could play with them guys or not. I was telling myself i wanted to and tried to prove that i could play with anybody on the floor (Not that i usually cannot play with others).

If you ask me what type of player i want to be, i wouldn't say a scorer or ace of the team or anything like that but a 'functional player'.

I am not going to elaborate on what a functional player is here. Perhaps you can look it up on some coaching websites. A functional player basically means (and that's how i interpret it) that a ballplayer who can be any missing piece of that team. In other words, you do whatever the team needed you to do in order to win a game.

For example, in the second game i played with them guys i got assigned to a team that already had 2 guards including a point guard. Being a PG myself, of course i want to make plays all the time, yet i gave it up and told them i was going to get some rebounds, run the breaks and set some screens for them guys. They were delighted by the decision (because they saw me play PG in my 1st game) and we won at last, i could tell they were quite amazed by my performance. Even so, you surely need to have the ability to do so, you have to be capable of doing those things. Otherwise you will instead become a weakness of the team and the opponents will attack the hole, eventually become a wound of defense of your team.

Those Citibank guys are skillful but getting old. Put the fastbreak aside, they can run half-court plays effectively and rotate the ball fairly well. I am so glad that i could play with them and got to meet them. And i am proven once and for all that i am a functional player. I can play with anybody under any circumstance.


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