In this week’s basketball coaching conversation, former NBA player Beno Udrih joins the Basketball Podcast to discuss transitioning from playing to coaching. Udrih played 13 seasons in the NBA, and won two NBA championships playing with the San Antonio Spurs.
Udrih played in the NBA for the San Antonio Spurs, Sacramento Kings, Milwaukee Bucks, Orlando Magic, New York Knicks, Memphis Grizzlies, Miami Heat and Detroit Pistons. He has played at top levels in Europe for the Slovenia National Team, and in the EuroLeague. He has been exposed to different coaching and playing philosophies that will serve him well as he transitions to coaching. Udrih has also participated in the NBPA Top 100 Camp coaching development program designed to help players transition into coaching.
Beno Udrih Quotes:
“When you are a player you don’t really focus on the front office stuff much. . to be a coach I think you have to understand the front office and what they do as well.”
“I was not the most athletic guy so I had to focus and do a lot of work on my fundamentals . . getting to my spots in the game . . getting my teammates open and getting them better shots than they would get maybe with somebody else on the court.”
“Teams that I played for and we were successful, we were better when we were just focusing on our own team . . if you stick to your system and you work at your system constantly every day, you become great at something . . instead of focusing too much . . on too many things.”
“When you’re coming off the bench . . I think you should be focusing on, ‘Okay, I’m going into the game and we’re tied, I’m coming out of the game and we’re plus four’. . I think it’s very important to look at that plus/minus when you’re a backup player.”
“As players, we have very short attention spans . . so it’s better to do it [a particular skill] more often but in shorter periods of time . . focus on one thing at a time . . and stay on it, keep teaching.”
“I think the mid or angled pick and roll especially if the big guy came full speed from under the basket . . that is the hardest thing to guard because you don’t know where the pick is coming from.”
“I think if you have an inside/out game and an outside/in game, it helps if you have two styles of play instead of constantly just playing outside.”
“If you give too many options, players are confused; they’re not on the same page and you can see that.”
“Work on weaknesses as well, but focus on strengths more so that you can become great at something instead of mediocre at everything.”
“Even when I work out now, one on zero, that’s what I work at – getting to my spots.”
“I think it’s a very important [thing] that players pay attention to: relationships. Stay in touch with people, that’s very, very important.”
“Pay attention to little details on and off the court.”
Click below to listen in if you listen on:
Beno Udrih Breakdown:
1:00 – Introduction
2:00 – Developing as a Future Coach
3:00 – Favorite Traits of Coaches
5:00 – Comparing his Practice in Europe and US
7:00 – Scouting Reports
8:00 – Workload Management
11:00 – Being a Role Player
13:00 – Coaching and Helping a Role Player
14:00 – Noticing Progress and Success
15:00 – What do Coaches Over Teach?
17:00 – Some Tricks for Smart Playing
18:30 – Perceptual Abilities – How can we Teach this?
20:00 – Watching Film
23:00 – Confidence
24:00 – Communication
26:00 – In-Game Coaching
27:30 – One of the Toughest Actions
29:30 – Value Ball Movement
30:30 – Pace Change
32:00 – Personal Beliefs
33:00 – How to Develop Ball Movement
34:30 – Focus on One Thing
36:00 – Teaching Close Out Skills
38:30 – Footwork on Catch and Shoot
40:00 – Teaching Ball Pick-Up
44:30 – Transitioning from Playing
46:40 – Building Relationships
49:30 – Rationale on the One-Foot Shooting
51:00 – Conclusion
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