How Two Words Made Me A Better Shooter In Basketball

In Basketball
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The diameter of the rim on a basketball goal is nearly twice the diameter of the ball. When you think about it like that, making a shot with no defense sounds easy. But unless you’re a basketball player (and even if you are, based on the questions I often receive), you know that it’s not so easy. 

Growing up, shooting a basketball never seemed more than a 50/50 bet to me, if that. I didn’t start actually expecting most of my shots to go in until late in my college years and in the pros, and had done ample practice to go with such expectations. 


I was 14, playing in one of my first organized basketball games.

The other team had just received two technical fouls; one on a player and one on their coach. Our team was awarded four free throws as a result, and our coach Steve could choose any of his players to shoot them. 

I’d made a corner three pointer to ice a win in our fist game of the season, so I had this reputation as our team’s “shooter.” Every ball player in Mt. Airy knew Dre as a “shooter” from that day forward. 


I jogged over to Steve. He looked at me. 

“Make these.” 

That’s all he said. 

I made all 4 free throws. I think those were the only points I scored that game. 

Shit, maybe Steve should have coached me through the rest of my career. 

I share this story, several more, and what they meant for me even off the court in one of my favorite series, starting with episode #917: Best Advice Basketball Coaches Ever Gave Me, Pt. 1. 

Listen here: 

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