Hoops: Smart-er way to travel

"If Dave doesn't know you, he is hard to approach, but once you know him then he is always kind. Yes he is sarcastic, and yes, he doesn't let you get away with saying stupid things, but people that are close to him don't think of that being
a hard-ass." -- Osvaldo Jeanty

The feeling on this end with how Dave Smart coaches has always been, Why wouldn't you coach that way? His Carleton Ravens players seem to come in with their eyes wide open; they know what they're getting into.

A good companion to Andrew Duffy's feature in the Citizen today is the profile Chuck Klosterman did on Steve Nash in 2005. Smart's Ravens, in their own way, also boil basketball down to its purest form -- "consciously creat(ing) short-term sacrifice if that loss yields long-term social benefit to players ... From each his ability, to each his needs."

It's important, as Nash pointed out in that article, not to "glorify the idea of playing basketball." That said, one analogy for what Carleton has done is that Smart takes young men who might be predisposed to becoming cutthroat capitalists, but who are open, even eager, to be share-the-ball, sprawl-on-the-floor socialists for four or five years. They also rebound really, really well.

(Much obliged to Andy Grabia from The Battle of Alberta for the link -- and sorry about the U of A Pandas hockey team. Laurier's got big hawks.)

The mind of Smart (Andrew Duffy, Ottawa Citizen, via cishoops.ca)

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