8 Takeaways from Adidas EuroCamp 2015

3 days, 100 players, 28 hours of basketball and some learning points to reflect on.

Three days in Italy at a premier showcase for European talent hoping to make it to the USA left me with a few key takeaways.

  1. Basketball is basketball. It doesn’t matter where in the world you are are, basketball is still basketball. It is something that brings people together and a vehicle to communicate with so many new people.
  2. Strength and Condition. The best players are in the best shape. Three full days of high intensity basketball really showed that the players had invested heavily into their bodies.
  3. The game is physical at the higher the level. Players play with a lot of contact in attack and on defence. Referees allow this to happen and players use it to play a slightly altered style.
  4. Fouling. Every player knew the importance of fouling in transition and understand how and when to do so. It added an advantage of stopping transition and plying in the half court.
  5. Defensive rotations. Defensive rotations and reads were immediate and mostly correct despite teams being together just a couple of days and communication being limited by language barriers.
  6. Basketball Intelligence. Movement, spacing & timing in offence and transition offence was on time and correct throughout the weekend, again despite bring together very long at all.
  7. Sportsmanship. It was excellent to see a high calibre of people invited to the camp. The players played hard throughout the three days including hard fouls and very physical play but alway would help each other up, share the ball and congratulate each other on their success.
  8. Every position, everyone working for the best possession. For three days straight there are only a handful of possessions that I felt a team took the possession off, a crucial factor with so many eyes on the games.
Teo Papaloukas speaking to EuroCamp attendees on his experiences in the EuroLeague.

This year’s guest speaker was former EuroLeague MVP, Teo Papaloukas, who shared his thoughts on what made him an elite level player on the European stage.

  • Be grateful to the people around you as they are the people making you better.
  • Want to win! It is better to find a role within a winning team than to excel on a losing one.
  • Work to be better than person in front of you.
If you imagine a room filled with people and you pick someone in front you to make sure you are better than. Work hard to be better then pick another person. And another person. One day you will stand with no one in front of you, but then everyone is working to be better than you and as you are at the front all their focus is on you.
  • Learn your team mates. Understand who they are and how they play.
  • Discover what hard work is and be honest with yourself as to if you have worked hard or not each day.
  • To play at the highest level you must learn to create opportunities for others.
  • Basketball doesn’t start at an exposure event or end so keep working hard whatever the outcome.
  • Things wont go the way you planned, embrace this and be ready for it.
  • The best players you play with or against are the ones that make you better, so try to find those players but more importantly try to be one of those players.