The Mentality Of A Point Guard
Part 1 of 2
It’s never too early to start learning the fundamentals of the game (learning to dribble, pass, shoot, and play good defense). The more you play, the more you grow – not only physically, but your knowledge of how to play the game grows as well. And it’s this “understanding of the game” that is extremely important to the point guard because he is the one that will be the leader on the court.
Developing the skills of a successful point guard takes hard work and lots of time, but if you’re the type of person that will work hard and bring the correct mentality each time you hit the floor, then you shouldn’t have any problems.
There are lots of characteristics that a point guard must possess, but as a coach, there are 8 that I consider to be the most important.
I’m going to tackle the first 4 characteristics now, and then share the other 4 later this week. So here we go…..
#1 – You Must Understand Your Coach.
As a point guard, you need to be an extension of the coach. You must understand the coach’s philosophy and always be aware of what the coach is wanting. You must be able to relay and direct your teammates so that they can carry out the coach’s plan. In a way, you ARE the coach on the floor.
#2 – You Must Understand Your Teammates and They Must Believe In You.
You need to know every player on your team inside and out. You need to know the roles and capabilities of each one and be able to put them into situations where they can excel at their strengths. They must believe that you put the team “first,” and you show this by playing and practicing extremely hard. By simply being an exemplar, you can motivate your teammates to do the same thing.
#3 – You Must Be the One Who Sets the Tone.
As the leader and the “coaches extension,” you must understand the importance of practice, the goal of practice, and how a successful practice is run. By being an example, you can motivate others and set the tone for a good, intense practice. When a practice lacks intensity, it’s often a result of having no leader. If you want to be a point guard that leads, then be willing to give it your all every time you hit the floor.
#4 – You Must Be Unselfish and Always Put the Team First.
Many coaches want their point guard to be so unselfish, that they don’t want their point guard even looking to score. They want him to be the “assist” guy or the guy that passes the ball to set up an assist. But this doesn’t always have to be the case – especially if you’re a point guard that can shoot and get points. What unselfishness really means is that your priority is to find opportunities for your team. You may sacrifice a wide open 3-point shot in order to make a pass to someone who has a better or higher percentage shot. The sign of a great point guard is one who can make the other players on the court better.
These are 4 of the 8 characteristics and skills that make up all successful point guards. These skills must be worked on, developed, and mastered by anyone who has the desire to be the point guard for his team.