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Togetherness: Learning more about Indiana Pacers Basketball from head coach Frank Vogel (Part I) (NBA.com/Philippines Exclusive)

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There I am: Trying to soak everything in during the SBP NBA Coaches Clinic at the Mall of Asia Arena.

Below is an except of my article from NBA.com/Philippines.

Making the most of an incredible opportunity

Last October 8, 2013, I was counted among the many coaches who participated in the NBA coaches’ clinic held at the Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City. The free clinic, sponsored by the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas (SBP), featured a number of the Houston Rockets coaches and the entire coaching staff of the Indiana Pacers taking time out of their busy Global Games schedule to share their basketball knowledge with those in attendance.

As a sport psychologist, I have always jumped at rare opportunities like this in order to learn from the game’s best and take a proverbial peek at their psychology of coaching (e.g., coaching philosophies, decision-making process, etc.). You see, once you look at the game of basketball from a scientific perspective, you will cease to see it as just a game or form of entertainment. In many respects, it becomes a chess match—a game within a game. What coaches have to do in order to put their players in a position to be successful.

I was especially delighted with coaching delegation of the Indiana Pacers that featured: Associate head coach Nate McMillan (former Seattle Supersonics and Portland Trailblazers head coach, USA Basketball assistant coach), assistant coach Ron “Popeye” Jones (former Dallas Mavericks and Brooklyn Nets assistant coach), defensive coach Dan Burke (who has been with the Pacers organization for the past 16-years), and head coach Frank Vogel[i].

Learning from the Pacers head coach

Prior to the SBP NBA clinic, I had not known much about coach Vogel other than the fact that his start in professional basketball was very similar to Miami Heat head coach Erik Spoelstra. Both men started out as video coordinators with Vogel getting his shot as the head video coordinator of the Boston Celtics. But once coach Vogel took center court and addressed the audience, I could immediately tell that he had a lot of confidence and leadership behind his voice.

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[i] Vogel is now in his 2nd full year (3rd overall) coaching the Indiana Pacers.

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