Are you playing for the right team?

by Transition Hoops Report


Are you completely happy with the travel basketball team you are playing for? If you answered “Yes” then congratulations! You don’t need to read the rest of this article and should continue on the path you are on.
But if you answered “No” then you may want to read a little further.
Players often feel they are on a team that does not allow them to reach their full potential. To make it worse, if a player does not make a change their window of opportunity to achieve their basketball dreams gets smaller and smaller.
But you can fix this situation. We have seen players make a successful switch. They are more confident, develop faster and get the opportunity that they wanted.

What should you do?

Below is a four step process. It will help you analyze your situation, find what is best and transition to a situation that is better for you as a player.

The right fit

Our belief is that players that are in a good fit are more likely to reach their potential. If you are happy with where you are and getting what you want that is awesome!

Unfortunately, that is not always the case. For example, there have been over 550 players that have decided to transfer at the NCAA DI level. Click here for the website:
Transfers in college happen for a lot of the same reasons they happen in high school and travel ball. These reasons include: broken promises, the player is not producing, the coach leaves the program, etc.
If you feel your travel team is not helping you achieve your goals, here are some things to look at and consider.

Ask the right questions – of the team and yourself

If you are considering changing travel teams then you already know what is missing and what you want. It could be your goals (basketball development, college exposure, increased basketball IQ) or what is most important to you (playing time, playing with friends, traveling, etc). Maybe the program’s philosophy does not match up with your’s.
There are no right answers here. The key is knowing what matters most to you.
But first, ask yourself who is responsible? Have you been working as hard as you can to maximize your opportunity? Have your earned your playing time or the right to take more shots? Have you fulfilled your commitment to the team? Have they fulfilled the commitments they made to you?
Depending on your answers it may be time to move to the next step.

Know your options

Before you pull the trigger on leaving your current team, make sure you have a landing spot first. In the northwest there are a ton of options.
To see a list of over 180 club, travel and AAU teams in the northwest, click here.
You might also check out this article, How to pick an AAU team. It dives in to personal goals, program goals, priorities, coaches, players and tournament selection.

Comparing your new options

If you have a few new candidates worth checking out, you may want to dig a little deeper. Here are a few ways you can do this:
  • Find a way to see them play, if you haven’t already. If they are at the same tournament you are at it is worth the effort to check out a game. There is nothing like the heat of battle to get a true sense of what the coaches, players and parents are really like.
  • See if you can come watch a practice. This is a good way to see how coaches develop players.
  • Some teams offer camps or similar events. These can give a player a longer term experience with the program.
  • Reach out to the team’s coach or program director. Talking to them will give you a personalized sense of who they are.


Move on – but be respectful

If you have decided to move on to another team, keep in mind the team that you are leaving behind. If possible you should attempt to keep a good relationship.
Let your current team know how thankful you are to have had the opportunity to play with them. You may be catching them off guard so be ready for an unknown response. No matter what, be respectful
Don’t burn any bridges. You never know when your paths may cross again or when you may need a favor.

A final piece of advice

Commit all the way to your new team. Don’t switch to dip your toe in the water. If you don’t go all in on your new team it can lead to getting less out of your new experience. This defeats the purpose of switching. If you are always looking at something else, you will never enjoy what is right in front of you.