The NBA finals are in full swing between the Los Angeles Lakers and the Orlando Magic. The game tonight reminds me of one of my favorite quotes from Michael Jordan that I share with college students all the time.
It seemed appropriate to compile an inspirational list of quotes from some of our favorite Basketball players and coaches. Aside from Michael Jordan's quote, I added other favorites including one from C. Vivian Stinger, who was a 2009 inductee into the Basketball Hall of Fame.
1. "I've missed more than 9000 shots in my career. I've lost almost 300 games. 26 times, I've been trusted to take the game winning shot and missed. I've failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed." - Michael Jordan
2. "Ask not what your teammates can do for you. Ask what you can do for your teammates." Magic Johnson
3. "A winner is someone who recognizes his God-given talents, works his tail off to develop them into skills, and uses these skills to accomplish his goals." - Larry Bird
4. "I live my life trying to never appear to be a small man." - Julius (Dr. J) Irving
5. "I'll do whatever it takes to win games, whether it's sitting on a bench waving a towel, handing a cup of water to a teammate, or hitting the game-winning shot." - Kobe Bryant
6. "Once you've done the mental work, there comes a point you have to throw yourself into the action and put your heart on the line. That means not only being brave, but being compassionate towards yourself, your teammates and your opponents." - Coach Phil Jackson.
7. “What I kept pressing upon them is one of the greatest gems there is — a diamond. A diamond, whether it's man-made or comes from coal, is a result of pressure. I wanted them to understand the more pressure is put on you, the more of a diamond you can become.” - Coach John Chaney
8. "Kids don't play every second like it's their life. Those kinds of people are probably the ones who think that in the last seconds we're going to come back, or wait until we do this or do that, but they don't understand how quickly it escapes.” - Coach C. Vivian Stringer