Player Development 101

HANG TIME HEADQUARTERS — Whenever March Madness hits, friends and acquaintances that consider themselves aficionados of the college game love to tell me about how much more fundamentally sound college hoops is compared to the NBA.

“They work so much harder on the basics,” I always hear. “In the NBA they just isolate the best player and let him go to work.”

This, of course, couldn’t be any more ridiculous than thinking a 20-hour-per-week practice limit is enough time to for college programs to properly mold players into the sort of ready-for-the-pros prospects people assume they should be.

The fact is, there is three times as much fundamental skill work and player development that goes on in the NBA ranks, mostly because there is no limit to how much time a player is allowed to improve his game.

That’s why this little gem from the Hornets, featuring lead assistant and my main man Mike Malone, will be used in my next debate:


  1. Neha Anand says:

    I like the helpful info you provide in your articles. I’ll bookmark your blog and check again here frequently. I’m quite sure I’ll learn plenty of new stuff right here! Best of luck for the next!

  2. watcher says:

    LOL, you probably should stop listening to those that obviously haven’t seen an NBA game in 20 odd years. No point explaining how good the league is these days unless they actually watch it.

  3. Jao says:

    good point Sekou. but who’s reading? should’ve made that training video include Lebron or the Heat. maybe even Spoelstra coaching, lol. you can bet dozens would flock to comment.

    • Gary says:

      Yeah with no Tags for Lebron or Bryant there’s no one rushing to comment. But this is a good topic. I would like to see the average week of a NBA star to see how hectic it is.

  4. Kingsfan says:

    I couldnt agree more with you Sekou. I have quite a bit of aquaintances that say the NBA game is not pure basketball. It’s a 1on 1 game they tell me. I don’t argue, I just leave him with his thoughts and walk away and think “is this guy serious?!?” The NBA game is so much more demanding than any college level program. You’re talking practice, shoot arounds, meetings and then there’s the time you work on your own game. I bet some NBA players “work” more than 9 hours a day at some points on their game, especially in the off season.

    To say that college has more fundamentals is just nuts.