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Foreign Players are "fundamentally harder-working" - Popovich

Discussion in 'NBA Dish' started by DFWRocket, Jun 13, 2013.

  1. DFWRocket

    DFWRocket Member

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    Honestly, I can see his line of thinking, but I think the difference is also in attitude and culture. American players are more "me-oriented" than team oriented. Its the American culture. Americans in general are spoiled and don't appreciate or take advantage of the things we are given.


    http://www.thepostgame.com/blog/dis...e-fundamentally-harder-working-most-americans


    By almost every measure -- winning percentage, playoff appearances, championships -- the San Antonio Spurs are the most successful North American franchise of the past 15 years.

    As with every dynasty, the Spurs owe their success to a combination of factors (scouting, coaching, luck, etc.). But in looking at this San Antonio squad -- you know, the one giving the Miami Heat a run for its money in the NBA Finals -- it's impossible not to notice one characteristic that separates the franchise from other teams. Namely, the Spurs have relied heavily on a plethora of foreign born players.

    Two of the Spurs' "Big Three" -- Tony Parker and Manu Ginobili -- come from outside the United States. Tim Duncan, San Antonio's legendary big man, was born in the U.S. Virgin Islands but played collegiately in the United States and represented the United States in the Olympics.

    This year the Spurs feature several key foreign role players in Tiago Splitter (Brazil) and Boris Diaw (France). Add in Patty Mills (Australia), Aron Baynes (Australia), Cory Joseph (Canada) and Nando De Colo (France), and more than half of the players on San Antonio's roster were not born in the continental United States. The eight foreigners on the Spurs constitute the most in the NBA in a season when there were a record number of foreigners.

    As you might have suspected, this is not a coincidence. In a brilliant and revealing ESPN The Magazine story by Seth Wickersham, Spurs coach Gregg Popovich says foreign players are "fundamentally harder working than most American kids."

    This work ethic is a result of many factors, perhaps none more important than the development systems in foreign countries:

    "...when Pop looks at American talent he sees many players who "have been coddled since eighth, ninth, 10th grade by various factions or groups of people. But the foreign kids don't live with that. So they don't feel entitled," he says, noting how many clubs work on fundamentals in two-a-day practices, each lasting up to three hours. "Now, you can't paint it with too wide of a brush, but in general, that's a fact."


    It definitely seems like Popovich has a point. Not only has he been scouting international players for decades, plus it's impossible to argue with the Spurs' remarkable and sustained success.
     
  2. finsraider

    finsraider Member

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    Seems we are headed this route as well:

    Delfino (Argentina)
    Garcia (Dominican Republican)
    Asik (Turkey)
    Motiejunas (Lithuania)
    Ohlbrecht (Germany)

    Beverley and Lin, while not foreign born, also fit into this "non-coddled" category.

    Pop has a point. The one thing I can say about all of these guys is I never question their effort.
     
  3. finsraider

    finsraider Member

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    Forgot to add in our two Euro-stashes:

    Llull (Spain)
    Aldemir (Turkey)
     
  4. RudyTBag

    RudyTBag Contributing Member
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    Let's see them beat Miami then... :)
     
  5. SkyrimOwnsAll

    SkyrimOwnsAll Member

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    the ironic thing is he maybe right, but its an AMERICAN thats winning them this series thus far, without Kawhi Leonard they are down 3-0
     
  6. tinywang

    tinywang Contributing Member

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    Damn that Harden and Parsons......SLACKERS!
     
  7. SirCharlesFan

    SirCharlesFan Contributing Member

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    I suggest you do a little more research on Beverley.
     
  8. funkyfresh

    funkyfresh Member

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    I agree with Pop. It's part of our society and standing in the world.
    Most other countries despise our selfish attitudes.
     
  9. QazQay

    QazQay Member

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    Maybe this is why Lin is such a hard worker!
     
  10. da_juice

    da_juice Member

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    Pop just got lucky that all 3 of his superstars weren't primadonnas and are all extremely selfless. That's what keeps the role players in line. If Pop coached any other superstar he'd be known as an anti-player's coach.

    Let's not forget that some of the biggest primadonnas were foreign, although that's not to say that most Americans(especially elite athletes) aren't coddled, spoiled, and entitled.
     
  11. AstroMechPLZ

    AstroMechPLZ Member

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    Shoudlnt the fact that they are giving Miami a run for their money with what is pretty obviously inferior talent be enough for you!? :)
     
  12. ApuN

    ApuN Member

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    Pop is full of BullShi*

    There have been so many foreign born busts in the NBA its not even funny
    Way too many to mention here

    The international route only expands the "pool" which gives you a greater chance of picking up great players simply because there are more to choose from.

    There simply is no real evidence that foreign palyers are more hard working or more fundamentally sound.

    Certainly much more flop happy though...
     
  13. vstexas09

    vstexas09 Contributing Member

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    Darko Millicic disagrees.
     
  14. rocketseagles07

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    Exactly. Pop is a great coach but he got lucky with the players/personalities the spurs were able to acquire. You don't believe there are lazy/primadonna athletes? Follow soccer for a couple months and then come back and let me know. Funny you guys mentioned motie, because even though I love the dudes attitude/hard work he wasn't always hard working. One of the biggest questions asked about him when he was getting drafted was how hard he would work/does he love the game
     
  15. mdrowe00

    mdrowe00 Member

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    I think Greg Popovich has said on many occasions that the Spurs' success over the past decade-plus HAS been because his most talented players have been unselfish.

    Hard to be a great team consistently in this league without there being some luck involved.

    Rare that a great coach admits how important luck is. Especially publically.

    But Popovich hasn't ever been what you would call "predictable", so there's really nothing to see here in what he's saying.

    You would always believe that, in a team sport, it's important that every player understand how important their contributions can be, are ultimately are, to a winning program.

    I think that's especially difficult to convey and sustain nowadays, because free agency drastically changes the make-up of teams at regular 3-4 year intervals. It's very difficult to create chemistry, cameraderie and trust between teammates in such a short period of time. And without those things, you're probably not going to win much, let alone compete for titles.

    Popovich did stress not to paint his opinion with too broad a brush. Exceptions to rules exist precisely because there are very few absolutes, in life or in pro basketball.

    LeBron James may be the most talented basketball player to play in at least the last 20 years (since Michael Jordan's 2nd retirement). He STILL is chided by media for being too passive or team-oriented or deferential. And granted, there are times when a great player has to take games into their own hands in order to win.

    I think our American culture is more obsessed with drama and sensationalism than with effort and teamwork. Teams win. But players get paid individually.

    "I before team, except after me"...or however that rhyme goes...
     
  16. Ziggy

    Ziggy QUEEN ANON

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    Meh... coaching can trump it all. I think I have a pretty good feel for Tony Parker. If that guy started his career under a less talented coach he wouldn't be the same player, wouldn't have the same personality. Stephen Jackson causes problems for certain teams, gets dubbed the ultimate teammate in San Antonio. If you're a great coach you take talent over work ethic any day.
     
  17. Aleron

    Aleron Contributing Member

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    Lol you mean the guy Pop waived a cpl weeks before the playoffs Jackson?
     
  18. ooooaaaah!

    ooooaaaah! Member

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    whatever, d wade, lebron, and bosh work just as hard. Pure hyperbole. There are a lot more player in the league now that are foreign because its a world sport. U.S. provides the most opportunity and thus has be most metals in the Olympics even though it isn't the biggest country (gold in basketball). Oh you say China has a lot more metals....trampoline and diving don't count, I'm a man.

    By the way, I'm a foreigner so I'm not standing up for the U.S. I simply think these comments are like asking if there is proof of the afterlife. Now I hope the Heat win so that you can see its a "whatever" statement by Pop.
     
  19. arno_ed

    arno_ed Contributing Member

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    This post just doesn't make any sense:confused:I have no idea what you are trying to say
     
  20. JayGoogle

    JayGoogle Member

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    The thing is people act like Lebron does not work?

    Kobe don't work?

    Durant don't work? Rose? These guys don't work hard?

    Some of you may question those guys effort, but I understand sometimes they get tired of carrying their teams and may not have it one night. Some people just have higher expectations of these guys.
     

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