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ProHoops Combine Recap - Apr 29, 2016

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Whew. After a long and tough day of competing, the combine has officially come to an end. I learned so much and competed against some of the top Division 1 talent coming out of college. Having never done a combine before, it was an awesome experience that I would encourage others to participate in (pending you do your research and check out my previous blog to understand what's best for you). So here's a recap of how the day went.

Rise and Shine

The morning session consisted of a warm-up, transition drills, and breakdown stations to get ourselves prepared for scrimmaging later on in the day. We spent the first hour going through arguably one of the most intense warm-ups I have ever had (not your typical sit down and stretch before practice lazy period). It wasn't difficult, but it definitely got your heart pumping and worked up a sweat which is technically what a warm-up should do. The energy in the gym was electric and competitive, yet encouraging, which was exciting to see when so many girls are chasing the same dream.

Bring Your 'A' Game

After the morning session, we quickly broke into our teams to start scrimmaging. There was a quick review to run through the plays we touched on in the breakdown drills, but after that it was game time. The games were 20 minutes with a running clock, but with the size of the camp and 10 girls per team, we rotated every 5 minutes. That means you had 10 minutes per game to showcase what you had in front of the agents, scouts, and coaches.

Nerve Wracking? I think so!

What Should Your Mindset Be?

My thoughts going into the scrimmages were to just let the game come to me. I did just that by starting off the first 2 possessions with a defensive stop and a steal. The more comfortable I got, the better I became on the court. By the 3rd game, I felt in my element making plays and determining the right reads for myself and teammates.

We took an hour lunch break halfway through the 4 games scheduled that day. During that time, there was a panel of ex-WNBA and Olympic athletes who shared some insight into their experiences and what it's like being on the next level. It was great getting to pick the brains of people who have been there and experienced the success we were all trying to attain. It was definitely inspiring and made me want to work even harder to get what I want out of my basketball career.

My team finished the day 3-1 and showcased our talent in front of over 25 agents/overseas coaches and 36 WNBA representatives. With those numbers, you can definitely see that the combine was beneficial in regards to getting in front of the right people to find you a job (whether in the WNBA or overseas).

After all of the camp games, there was a 'Top 20' showcase game that was determined by the coaches and WNBA representatives to evaluate talent further and see certain match-ups. I didn't get chosen for this game; however, I'm not discouraged by any means. I gathered great feedback from the coaches and know what to implement into my game to become an even stronger force on the court.

So What's Next?

Overall, the camp was an amazing learning experience and another opportunity to be evaluated against top talent. I took away key things that I can improve on in order to better my options for going overseas in the Fall.

Something they kept telling us was to 'bring your A game' and not to wait until it was too late to make a statement. Maybe if I didn't wait until the 3rd game to branch out and become a dominant player on the court, I would have made that all-star showcase.

Who knows?

What I can say, and the advice I have for you all is to bring it from the minute you step out on the court and not let up until the buzzer sounds in the last game.

Don't waste time 'feeling out' the team and trying to understand the strengths and weaknesses of your teammates. I'm not saying don't be a smart team player. I am saying to make your statement from the beginning and establish yourself as a leader WITHIN THE CONFINEMENTS OF YOUR GAME. Go out there and dominate doing what you do. That doesn't always have to be scoring. If you're strength is rebounding, then go out there and get every single rebound on both ends of the floor and dominate in that way. Do what got you to this point and do it to the best of your ability.

Since the ProHoops Combine, I have been preparing for the Eurobasket Summer League Pre-Draft Camp in Atlanta, GA this weekend (April 8-10). I have been selected to participate in a private workout hosted by ex WNBA Coach of the Year, Marynell Meadors and I am so excited to get another opportunity to go against top talent.

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