So much is made of the importance of role players that I wanted to give you a list of some of the things we feel are important to successfully fulfilling the role of a role player. These are things we talk to our role players about repeatedly throughout the year -- not just a “one-time mention”.
• Know and understand your role. This is the joint responsibility of the player and the coach -- the coach for explaining the role in a “without a doubt of what it is” manner, and the player for understanding exactly what he is going to be called on to do.
• Be an All Star in your role. We want to be known for having the best role players in the league. We emphasize this to the point that our players know how important this is to us as a staff. This is a very important part of our sell job to the player.
• Have the mental strength to execute your role.
This means execution in gamesandin practice -- not just in games. We think this is important since it is during practice that players develop trust in each other. We want to make sure everyone trusts that everyone will fulfill his role. They will see that every day in practice.
• Understand that your role stays the same even if you go from sub to starter. When injuries occur and role players go from being subs to being starters, they often try to increase their roles and begin to do things they shouldn’t do. We talk to our guys to make sure they know that even though they may be starting, we still want them to fulfill their roles. It's when they try to do more that we find we get into trouble.
• Understand that your role is likely to be the same for years to come. This is a tough one in that most players feel they may have sacrificed last year and that this year it’s their turn. The coach has to do a great job of continuing to sell the player on the importance of his role and that the team will need it again this year.
• Improve in your role each year. The best role players want to find ways to get better in the roles they have. I read an article on Shane Battier where he talked about how he studies his opponents' high production areas of the floor and then works hard to keep them out of those areas. He knows his role is to defend but he takes it a step further by finding ways to become even better at his role. We don’t want players to get mad at their roles; we want them to get better at their roles.
The Servant- James C. Hunter Good To Great-Jim Collins How the Mighty Fall- Jim Collins Built To Last- Jim Collins Me 2.0- Dan Schawbel Court Sense- John Giannini The Energy Bus- Jon Gordon Training Camp- Jon Gordon Blink-Malcolm Gladwell Outliers-Malcolm Gladwell The Tipping Point- Malcolm Gladwell Power of Who-Bob Beaudine Playing For Coach Meyer- Steve Smiley Rebound Rules- Rick Pitino The Five Temptaitions Of A CEO-Patrick Lencioni The Four Obsessions of An Extraordinary Executive- Patrick Lencioni The Five Dysfunctions of a Team-Patrick Lencioni Daly Life- Chuck Daly The Carolina Way- Dean Smith The Gold Standard-Coach K Beyond Basketball-Coach K Meat Market-Bruce Feldman Urbans Way-Buddy Martin The Man Watching - Anson Dorrance Miracle of St. Anthony Quiet Strength- Tony Dungy The Art of War- Sun Tzu Smart Take from the Strong- Pete Carril