You asked for my hustle, I gave you my heart – because it came with so much more.
It’s the ultimate sacrifice. Greatness has a cost.
It reschedules your plans for you, it puts your family and friends on hold, it makes you feel misunderstood, and it will put you in some deep dark holes.
Greatness demands everything from you.
Your mind, your body, your spirit and your soul.
So what do you do when you shoot four air balls in a playoff game, what do you do?
Do you sulk? Do you weep?
When you disappointed all of your teammates, when you let down all of the fans, do you ask for sympathy? Do you ask why me?
When they blast the coach for keeping you in the game, do you blame yourself? When they’ve drawn up their own conclusions about how your career is going to end, do you wish you could go back in time and make a different decision?
Or do you get off of the plane and go straight to Palace Aids High and get the janitor to open up the gym and lock yourself in there until the sun comes up?
And you go shoot, and you drill, and you relive that moment and change the outcome over and over again.
Decisions shape our destiny, and obsession can be beautiful.
What separated me is not a gift; it was a hunger.
A hunger to hunt when others would eat. A hunger to hone in when others thought they perfected.
They had a crossover, they had a fade-away, they all wanted rings, but they also had obligations. They weren’t willing to cut it all off.
See, its not just about going to the court, shooting, dribbling, practicing the same move again and again, no no.
Lack of skill is from a lack of mind – on and off the court.
From a little boy sitting on the ball in the park to a grizzled veteran on his last legs, its been a mission from day one.
To impart what I know, so you can better understand yourself. I’m here because the game needed me as much as I needed it.
The game was my comfort; a platform to grow and teach others the same.
It was where I learned about the terrors and joys of life.
Of ice baths and buzzer beaters, of struggle and of gold – and everything in between.
It was where I transformed the darkness to come closer to the light.
And it always brought a new challenge; a flaw that needed to be healed. And the game would send the medicine directly my way.
And you will have to make that choice for yourself. Whether that treatment would be worth it or not for you.
But greatness can not come without that cost.
How do you press enough without pressing too hard? How do you go far enough if you don’t go too far?
How do you get eleven others to begin their relentless pursuit to duplicate yourself?
Not in terms of skill, but in terms of competitive spirit.
To instill the intensity, to impart that DNA so they can be champions on the court and men off of it.
How do you prove to the world who you really are – to honestly express yourself?
The media will paint a story, the fans and critics will create their own, but no one’s expectations-no one’s-could live up to my own.
My love to become more, and to give more – I did everything for you.
Because that’s what you do when someone make’s you feel as alive as you’ve made me feel.
— Jaret Grossman —