Thoughts regarding sports and mentoring.
Caution: Severe Tennessee Titan, Memphis Grizzlies, Chicago Cubs, and Scott Stallings bias.

Shake It Off

June 14th, 2012 | Comments Off on Shake It Off

There is a growing trend of athletes not shaking hands or congratulating an opponent following a tough loss.

Bill Belichick walked off the field before Super Bowl XLII was officially over.

A young Lebron James exited the 2009 NBA Eastern Finals sans fist bumps.

The British Olympic Association is encouraging its athletes to not shake hands in the upcoming 2012 Summer Olympics.

And now Kevin Garnett and Rajon Rondo are joining in on an ugly fad of not acknowledging an opponent following a tough loss.

Following one particular game (during the ceremonial sportsmanlike handshake line), I childishly told each player that they were bags of garbage and played like garbage.

Inevitably, word got back to my father (one of my coaches), who made himself very clear. Not only was I going to apologize to the opposing team, but if ever did something like that again, my sporting career would be over.

When you fail to honor an opponent, you fail to honor the game itself. And a game without honor is a game not worth playing, much less winning.

Aside from accidentally motivating your opponent to play better, risking further humiliation during the post-game handshake was a great deterrent to trash talking an opponent before or during a game. Who would risk eating their prideful banter in the grinning face of their victorious opponent?

If this petulant behavior continues, expect severe insults to increase, on-court confrontations to escalate, and respect amongst competitors to diminish.

Don’t believe me?  Ask Mr. Garnett how his peers feel about him.

The easiest way to practice for honoring your opponent at the end of the game, is to honor your opponent throughout the game.

The Lead Block challenges players and coaches to honor their opponents, on and off the court. To find out more about how you can become a part, click HERE.


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Weekly Block – Moving On

December 21st, 2011 | Comments Off on Weekly Block – Moving On

Every Wednesday, the Weekly Block will cover everything that matters in the world of sports. To me. And maybe you, too.

1. Tennessee Titans (7-7) (2nd in AFC South)

With the playoffs all but out of reach and Matt Hasselbeck’s underwhelming season, Mike Munchak must consider the possibility of making the move to Jake Locker.

2. Nashville Predators (17-12-4, 38pts) (4th in WC-Central)

The Predators were on the move until having their 5-game winning streak broken by Alexander Ovechkin. Nashville’s inconsistency is mirrored by goalie, Pekka Rinne.

3. Memphis Grizzlies (Moving Forward)

Shane Battier took his talents to South Beach and now the Grizzlies will need to move on without the services of forward Darrell Arthur. At least Marc Gasol was resigned.

4. Chicago Cubs (zzzz… Moves)

The new regime seems content to build slowly and from the inside out. Ian Stewart is hardly a replacement for Aramis Ramirez, but Carlos Zambrano might not move out.

5. Final Block (Moving On)

The Lead Block specializes in preparing players for life after school and after a sporting career at any level. Find out how you can become a part and click ABOUT.


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Field of Play

July 18th, 2011 | 1 comment

Sports and life have always had an indelible connection.  Here are just a few life lessons I learned in the field of play.

1. Life is not always fair.

Whether playing a superior opponent, getting an unlucky bounce, or being on the wrong end of a bad call, the odds will sometimes not be in your favor.  Play anyway.

2. Authority is absolute.

The ratio of coaches and players successfully changing the mind of a game official, to their getting ejected from the competition, is very lopsided.  Respect authority.

3. Winning is hard.

Winning creates an overwhelming temptation to gloat, coast, or appraise your talent beyond its true value.  Handling victory is the key to maintaining success.

4. Losing is harder.

Losing creates an overwhelming temptation to complain, become lazy, or pass the blame anywhere possible.  Handling defeat is the key to improving your tomorrow.

5. Never give up.

Buffalo Bills vs Houston Oilers Boston Red Sox vs New York YankeesDallas Mavericks vs Miami HeatJapan vs USA Hope creates new opportunities.


Cliches and trite sports observations aside, The Lead Block’s purpose is to leverage experiences from the playing field to prepare student athletes for life off-the-field and after high school.

Check out how you can become a part of a mentoring movement that will shape communities around the country for years to come.



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