Mental struggle continues. After our first game against Ottobrunn it seemed as good Season start for my boys, but unfortunately at second game in Holzkirchen Team got mental block. Since then we are struggling against every other team that comes before us. Mentally. Also in this game where struggled the whole game and then broke down in last six minutes because of the mental issues. Lost 34 to 42.
We managed to achieve a goal as a Team to play good defense. It still isn’t perfect or even very good defense, but it is good defense. Good defense is good enough for now. It will develop over time. At least team has no mental blocks there, only thing to do defensively is to keep working on communication, out-boxing and foot work. I am happy to say that my young sirs understood the message from the team defense and now it is question of time and effort.
Offense however… is not so good. Part of it might be that I put a bigger emphasis on defense at the beginning of season. Since the game with Holzkirchen I’ve been putting emphasis on offense which requires a different kind of mental game as defense does. While in defense the players has no problem taking on contact and closing the players – in offense team is somehow afraid on taking the contact. I have to find a way to make this work. Willingness to do lay-ups and plays without being afraid from contact coming.
This refers also to 50-50 balls. Because of the fear from contact players also don’t go for loose balls (which are called 50-50 balls because of the same chance anyone getting it – opponent or yourself). This is a big problem as there are many situations per game where the ball is for the grabs and the opponents get it just because they want it a little bit more. This transfers also directly to rebounding or any type of fight for the ball – after first step of aggression, that is – jumping and touching the ball, players stop and don’t go for the second, third or whatever step to SECURE the ball! This is mental thing, this has to be drilled mentally not to stop on spot after first step, but do whatever is necessary to secure the ball and start our possession.
Now, these are the observations I have. It is very important to act on this mental game as it can’t just be fixed with more drills or more running or whatever. It is also important to act upon them as it reflects the whole being of a young man. This mental fear can come or go into young man’s life and do a damage there. My goal here is to teach them to become mentally strong on the field and hope that they will be able also to transfer this skill of mental toughness into life. This is the vision.