My life is surrounded by basketball; it’s a beautiful thing.

As a result, basketball ties in with my job as a scout, whether I’m in the gym analyzing talent, at the office writing scouting reports, or on the court playing.

Over the weekend, my brother Elias (@Elias_NPH) and I were routinely heading out to the gym to get shots up, and compete for “the title.”

Regretfully, Elias currently owns the three-point crown…for now.

Anyway, due to Holiday hours, our gym was closed but we needed to get our fix in; we decided to purchase a daily membership at a 24/7 court not too far away.

Elias walked into the gym first, wearing an NPH t-shirt, and the players (most of them in high school) seemed to be familiar with @NorthPoleHoops. Elias took a spot in the corner, preparing himself for the game, while I was on the opposite side of the gym.

As I was sitting down waiting for my game to start, I hear, “That’s North Pole Hoops, they never show me love,” whispered by a high school player to his friend in the direction of Elias (not knowing who I was, sitting to his left). I continued to listen for about 20 seconds, overhearing him say he averaged over 20 points a game as a junior.

Then, I jumped into the conversation to get acquainted.

MJ

I thought to myself “20 points per game? Not bad,” and moved on to ask about his grades, age and school, only to find out that he transferred to a school in America that I have never heard of before.

How ironic is that? The same player looking for exposure, packed his bags and ran away from it.

If he was indeed averaging over 20 PPG as a junior, and carried it on to his senior year, he would be recognized, and I would certainly have found out by now…given that we’re from the same city!

As I stepped on the court and played on his team, I realized that this player did not have a position, or a perimeter game at 6’3, while lacking confidence on the floor. To be completely blunt, this player did not need any exposure, what he needed was skill development.

The reason I write this post is not to simply make an example out of this youngster, but to tackle a key issue that is shared by a majority of young student-athletes pursuing the basketball dream.

Our youth are both misguided & uninformed, desperately in need of direction. Many lack the formula to “making it” when it’s quite simple, especially in this internet age. If student-athletes can take care of the following three areas, they will undoubtedly succeed.

  1. Excel academically
  2. Work relentlessly on fundamental skills
  3. Produce for high school and/or club team

Nothing is given in life, or basketball. Everything is earned. Each individual controls their destiny depending on how much effort he or she is willing to put in.

If you’re a student-athlete reading this, please don’t be the guy looking for a hand out. Don’t be the guy making excuses for why you are not getting noticed.

Be the guy that works, and remains patient for his time to come. Be the guy that makes it undeniable that he is among the best in the city.

Through production on the floor, be the guy that demands attention.

 

 Follow Tariq_NPH and @NorthPoleHoops on Twitter

 

Tariq Sbiet

Written by Tariq Sbiet

NPH National Scout, tracking Canada's TOP prospects from high school to the NBA. With a genuine passion for the game, you will find Sbiet in the bleachers of most major tournaments and events across Canada & the United States -- Discovering talent from coast-to-coast, while absorbing knowledge at every opportunity. Sbiet has covered the game at every level, combining a basketball and media background with a degree in Media & Journalism from the University of Guelph-Humber. *Inspiration is the spark plug to success*

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4 thoughts on ““They Never Show Me Love”

  1. Gary towle says:

    Hi Tariq
    Great article and advice ! Especially agree that our youth are misguided and uninformed and desperately in need of direction. The formula ( academics, dedicate & relentlessly work at skill development, and seize the moment in HSGames , showcases, club teams) is very simple as you state and were principles I used to “make it” as a youth to D1 Providence College .
    You may not remember a phone conversation that we had 2-3 years ago regarding my son Christopher. You gave me similar advice  but more so you ask me to be patient that Chris was only 12 and you wanted to see Christopher continue to work hard but more so to work at developing the abilty to make the players around him better.. Well , it was the best advice anyone has given Christopher and I want to sincerely thank you. His game has really grown since our conversation and his approach to the game is guided by the advise you gave us . His motto is there are “no excuses” thanks to you.
    He has recently been asked by the AAU team BABC in Boston to play for them this spring/summer and has 4 of the top prep school in New England currently recruiting him for Sept 2014..
    Happy New Year and all the best in 2014!
    Gary Towle

    1. Tariq Sbiet Tariq Sbiet says:

      Gary, happy new year!

      Thanks for leaving this comment, I’m thrilled to hear that you remembered our conversation, and most important, that Chris has stayed focus. Ive been tracking him from a far and seeing/ hearing good things.

      See you in a gym very soon Gary! All the best.

  2. Josie says:

    There is still something wrong here. You say you would have recognized him if he was scoring 20 ppg as a junior? Why must a player be averaging high points for them to be recognized? What happened to them being recognized based on other things such as assists, rebounding, steals, etc. A kid could be averaging 20 ppg but having 8 turnovers ppg.But because he scored 20 ppg he gets recognized over the kid who scores 12 ppg but is killing the other stats. The way you evaluate players and find them seriously needs to be reevaluated. If you are a reflection of what they teach at Guelph-Humber then there is seriously something wrong there with what they are teaching the future journalists of Canada. As a journalist you don’t follow the hype you find the story. Remember this in the future.

    1. Tariq Sbiet Tariq Sbiet says:

      Hi Josie, thanks for your comment. 

      Not once did I say that you HAVE to average 20 PPG, but I was saying if the kid did actually have those stats, ppl would know. Its not easy to put up those type of numbers. Please don’t misunderstand the point. When we evaluate talent, especially at a first look, we look for traits like energy, leadership, communication, size for position, skill set, I.Q, etc. At Guelph-Humber I learned about media and journalism, not about basketball. I learned about the game by playing it, watching it and discussing the game with coaches, players and basketball minds at the highest of levels. If you have been following along, you would know that we at NorthPoleHoops have discovered players of different sizes, positions and skill sets for years. Thousands of them across the country.

      Thanks again for reading. Happy new year! 

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