Sunday, October 16, 2016

It All Comes Back to Coaching

In business school, you learn early on that some of the best management principles come from sports coaching. These principles also exist for parents; goals, expectations, motivation, reinforcement, dedication, focus, all for the achievement of success. With that in mind, I often allow my parenting philosophy to be molded by some legendary sideline heroes. Do you really think Phil Jackson, the Zen Master, 6 time NBA Champion, revolutionary visionary of the Triangle Offense, would have a hard time getting a 2 year old to eat his dinner? Or put on his shoes when leaving the house? Or not throwing chalk across the playroom? Not a chance. He kept Shaq and Kobe from killing each other and Dennis Rodman out of wedding dresses. It is important to learn from his genius.

Always Maintain Solid Defensive Shape

It doesn't matter if you have Michael Jordan scoring 50 points a game if the opponent scores 130. So focus on the matchups.

1) Identify your best man to man defender. That is usually always Mom, but depending on the situation, it may be Dad. Make sure that defender is aware of their responsibility going in as they will be put out on an island and expected to come out on top. The Bulls unconventionally used Scotty Pippin, a small forward, to mark and shut down Gary Payton, a point guard and the catalyst of the Sonics offense, in the '96 Finals, stroke of genius.

2) Maintain a positive numbers up scenario as much as possible. Ideally, you always have an environment to be able to double team your opponent. Mom and Dad vs. 1 kid is a winning 2-1 formula. It will be very difficult for the kid to break your defense down. If you have 2 or more kids, grandparents can come into to maintain the a positive ratio. The Bulls in '97 and '98 Finals, would double team Hall of Famer Karl Malone and make Byron Russel, yes someone you never heard of, try to beat them, master class from the Coach.

Unfortunately often the double team isn't available. This is where it's important to then to play a strong man to man, 1-1, defense. And don't take it lightly. Sometimes Dad can man up great at the grocery store but get slaughtered at dinner time. Good 1-1 defending is crucial. For families with 2 kids, it's often very often 1-1 so PRACTICE and PERFECT that good defensive technique.

3) Avoid zonal defending as much as possible. This obviously piggybacks on the positive numbers up strategy. Once you as a parent are outnumbered, the zone defense kicks in, 1 parent vs. 2 or more kids, feels like the Raptors surrounding the humans in Jurassic Park. You just sit in fear praying for the T-Rex to smash through the ceiling. Zone defenses are the least effective but necessary to sustain until a numbers up scenario can be achieved. For those parents with 3 or more kids, sorry but you won't lead the league in defensive stats and categories. You can't defend Kobe with Jason Kidd or Allen Iverson but you can't zone them either as Horry and Fisher can hit open shots also, way too easy for the Lakers in '01 and '02.

Conclusion

Parenting a 2 year old is fun but testing. The increased energy and mobility lead to an increased desire to play. This desire is at the expense of listening and cooperating. This is where the solid defensive techniques come into play. How well we defend produces the outcomes of learning we want for our kids and hopefully returns a somewhat sane home shortly.  You can read anything you want to about feelings and coddling, but feelings and coddling don't have 6 Championship Rings and a spot in the Hall of Fame. Trust me, listen to the Zen Master, and when this long arduous season ends, you will be lifting the trophy on center court as the confetti falls!

Loving some donuts....
 Vacation with 9 adults to 1 kid....Making Phil Jackson proud....
 This really happened....just as described....
 Ballon fun lasted 13 days....simple pleasures....



 Modelling....

 No shame....
 How we lounge....
 Da Beach....
 Safety first....

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