Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Handling The Pressure

Hey Everyone.

Hope all is well with everyone and you are enjoying the winter where ever you are, After seeing a part of the all star game in the weekend I got my idea for my next blog.

A all star game is in same ways a dream of a pro player, not in the sense that you get picked to play in it because that's a given, but in the sense that you don't fell almost any pressure.

There aren't too many things on the line in a game like that, you go out and get the chance to have fun and not worry too much what happens, and if you win or lose.

In the years I have been around I have seen many players manage their pressure in different ways, I can only speak for myself but I feel pressure and nervous every game.

In a way I think that it always reminds me that I care about what I do, about my team and about the game.At the same time I have to admit that there are and were times where the pressure is almost too much.

I don't mean that I can't play or can't handle it, but just that during times of pressure thoughts that I don't really want pop up to my head,even though it happens during the days before the game.

I have had those thoughts of a injury, not even faking one, but hoping to get injured and cheering from the sidelines.If that happens no one could blame me, and everyone will remember the big contribution that I gave the team.

That way I could come to the game clean and quite, not been nervous, not waiting for the jump ball and not worrying how I will play, but just sit down and see others running up and down.

I'm sure that if you sit with a lot of players in a open and real conversation a lot of them will tell you about the struggles that they had at some point of their playing career.

I know that no one can see the pressure one me, or no one thinks that I'm nervous before a game or that I have those thoughts, cause I keep cool and can "act" the part.

I try to show everyone that I'm doing fine and feeling fine, so I can just think that a lot of different players have those kinds of thoughts. When I just started playing pro, it was harder, I was much more nervous, but with the experience I'm getting I feel less nervous then I used to.

I think that a lot of times when we see a player performing we can't be sure if the reason for a bad performance is pressure or not. Sometimes players look like they don't really care and they are just there to get it over with.

It's something that drives fans crazy, but I guess that the pressure can make your freeze on the court,field or what ever you are a part of and make you look nonchalant.

There are cases when you see players try so hard, that it becomes over trying.I think that's also because they feel pressure to be great, to be the number one talent and so on.

I think that in my case the pressure is first of all because of what I expect from myself, and my need to play good and succeed every game.

Again, just like many pro's, but maybe worrying about not playing well, or thinking that I won't play well is what gets me nervous. I can't really put a finger on it, and also I don't talk about it with other players, so I don't know what they really fell.

If I try to connect it with been gay, it might have something to do with it. Maybe wanting to be better or to prove myself more to "fit in". it's just something I threw up to the air, since it's not something I can really point to as I said before.

I can honestly say that luckily I'm almost never injured and even if I do get injured I almost do anything possible to play. So I can only guess that what I sometimes think just stays as something on my mind and not something that really happens.

When it comes down to it, when I'm on the court I usually feel on top of the world, there is nothing greater than been on the court in the money time.

When the game is close and everything is on the line, the pressure is out there and I can feel it,but in those moments I wouldn't change it for anything and been injured or sitting out just sounds crazy to me.


  1. Seems like it's easy to worry before a game because your mind has time to let those thoughts in. But during the game, it's all reaction and muscle memory and letting the flow take over; your brain doesn't have a lot of time for conscious thought.

    In fact, as a fan, I think players who think less tend to do better, all else being equal. Sports are so much more mental than most people think. That is mental from the standpoint of training your mind how to be in the moment.

  2. Hey..

    So I just started to follow ur blog.. I find it interesting bc you're supposedly high profiled athlete and dealing with being gay. But I have to be frank.. I always have this discussion at work or with family about celebrities/athletes/politicians who are gay and have chosen not to come out. I say that we need these people to come out bc there are young people out there who need to have people in the spotlight to look up to. I am 27 and when I was growing up, I had no one. I didnt even know what gay was till Grade 9. Even through highschool there were no high profiled individuals out there who were "cool" and were out to look up to.

    There people on the other side of the fence who think that its up to the individual to stay in the closet who are in the spotlight bc of bad press and then there are people like myself who think we need more people out of the closet to help stop the negative thoughts towards gays.

    So my question to you would be; What side do you sit on? Obviously your on the one with staying in the closet but would there be any chance for you to come out in the near future or is this a long term thing for you?

    Whatever you choose is your choice obviously but I really really hope there are more people in sports and hollywood to come out and show the world that anyone can be gay and its alright to be gay. That everyone knows a gay and it doesn't hurt society that there are gays out there..

    Man.. after this comment.. I feel like I should start my own blog.. ha ha ha

    Anyways thanks for listening.. Again, I do like your blog and hopefully you can be out and proud.. Live a more happy life on the court and off. Later!