A team’s draught fortune frequently determines their NBA future. If you’re lucky enough to win the lotto, generational abilities might just come your way. One such generational talent that caused teams to trade up for the chance to choose him was LeBron James.
The anticipation surrounding an upcoming prospect was unlike anything the NBA had ever seen. After almost 15 years, it occurred again. This time, Zion Williamson was the destination of the hype train.
The phenomenon had already become well-known because of his high school mixtapes. And while under Coach K’s guidance at Duke, he further proved that he was deserving of all the hype.
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But during his time at Duke, things didn’t always go as planned. Coach K, often known as Mike Krzyzewski, is known for his strict ways of discipline. He even momentarily benched Williamson, which elicited a perplexed response from his young star.
It all works out in the end. And in this instance, Coach K’s plan ultimately benefited Zion.
How Exactly Did Coach K’s Benching of Williamson Benefit Him?
High school basketball stars trying to establish a name for themselves in college basketball were nothing new to Coach K. Zion wasn’t the first or the last highly touted freshman to join his team.
Naturally, Coach K had a few psychological tricks prepared to put his new recruit to the test. In the lead-up to his rookie season, Coach K made the decision to sit Zion. Later, Zion acknowledged that Krzyzewski had explained his decision. Williamson’s remark and the subsequent numbers further imply that the scheme was successful.
Throughout his tenure at Duke, Zion went on to average 22.6 points and 8.9 rebounds over 33 games. The Pelicans decided to invest in the hoopla surrounding the rookie forward despite the fact that he was unable to provide Coach K with the National Championship. And the first superstar as we know it emerged.
Zion recalled his time on the bench when speaking with J J Redick, another Blue Devil.
He plays mind games so masterfully; there must be a reason why he did that. He claims, “I just wanted to bring out the best in you,” and he thought I was holding back since I was surrounded by other stars. When asked about his benching and Coach K’s mind trick, Zion said, “Putting me on the blue team really made me come out of my shell and attack those guys and always make my presence known on the court.
Redick’s response to the idea of mind tricks shows that he, too, was a victim of some of Coach K’s ruses. Furthermore, Redick’s illustrious career serves as further evidence of the effectiveness of Krzyzewski’s man-management strategies.
Who Are Some of The Other Big Names to Have Blossomed Under Mike Krzyzewski’s Guidance?
Since Coach K took over in 1980, the Duke Blue Devils have been one of the top basketball programmes in the USA. After being exposed to Krzyzewski’s methods at Duke, numerous prospects of the All-Star and All-NBA calibre have entered the league.
The newest star from Duke’s storied production line is Zion Williamson. As the finest active Duke graduate in the NBA, Zion is joined by fellow All-Stars Kyrie Irving, Jayson Tatum, and Brandon Ingram.
Grant Hill, Elton Brand, Carlos Boozer, Luol Deng, and Christian Laettner are a few examples of former All-Stars. When it comes to productivity over ages, that makes for a rather constant list.
Most people would probably consider Coach K’s work with Team USA to be his greatest accomplishment. For basketball scouts and fans, his ability to produce NBA players of high calibre on a consistent basis may be what makes him stand out.
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