How is that for an opening line?
But seriously, losing really sucks.
I hated losing when I was a kid and it hasn’t changed now that I am an adult. But losing is a part of life and it is certainly a part of basketball. Without exception, every time two teams take the court, one of them will lose.
And last night, we were that team.
We (DeMatha) got clobbered in our conference championship game. While we certainly felt prepared and deserving of success entering the game… we did not play with the effort, toughness or execution required of champions. We did not Finish Strong.
We simply had a bad night. That is not an excuse; it’s a fact. We did not play as well as we were capable of playing. And our opponent did all of the little things that champions do. They were clearly the better team last night. They deserved to win.
While I am saddened we let a golden opportunity slip away, I am very proud of our team, the season we have had (27-4) and the character we showed in last night’s loss.
Remember, there are Teachable Moments in every aspect of basketball and every aspect of life.
How you handle defeat and how you carry yourself after a loss speaks volumes about who are you as a person. It reveals your true character… more so than winning does. Your true colors surface during adversity.
Don’t get it twisted, losing should hurt and you should feel disappointed. If it doesn’t hurt then it doesn’t matter, and if it doesn’t matter – why even play the game?
Allowing yourself to feel hurt and disappointed is OK. Don’t hide from your feelings and emotions. Sit in them for a short period of time. Embrace them. Then find a way to channel them into the fuel you need to get back to work. Losing, like failure, is never permanent.
But losing is never an excuse to show poor sportsmanship, to make excuses or to be a bad teammate. Don’t ever let losing define you – as a player or as a person.
Learning how to lose with class is a very, very difficult skill… but it is an essential one.
Time to get back to work,
Hardwood Hustle Blog