Bronx, NY. On a Monday night after two weekend wins, the New York City Thunder were at it yet again in the gym. After the two-day stretch in Maryland and New Jersey, players were still launching jump shots. No fans. No refs. No jerseys. Just ball.
Chris Grant @ Fireball
The floor general Chris Grant, who played his college ball at Morgan State, was found helping teammates work on footwork, among them Kobe Massey.
Another leader, John “Mookie” Thomas followed suit at the other end and introduced more fundamentals. After a twenty-point victory on Sunday against the Jersey Express, the offense was the last thing that needed tuning.
Mookie, third from left @ West 4th St
Many players have played ball for Division I college programs and for teams overseas. Throw in a mix of streetball players and what do you get? An explosive team on offense. With Owner/Coach Logan, a new approach was used.
Defense and conditioning made up the majority of the practice on Tuesday. Tip drills appeared tedious after the 3rd time around, but communication became a necessity. Teamwork is developed through player mistakes and anything but 100% effort.
Coach Logan rocking the Kingdome jersey
Coach Logan watched in silence as guys showed improvement. His vocal leadership on the sideline was heard from time to time. He understood the amount of talent on the team when he first inherited it but knew that they still had a long way to go….even now at 4-1…
Practice for the week wrapped up on Thursday night. Running rotations, guys gave high energy only stopping to listen to the coach on stoppages. Repetition to offensive sets with added defensive pressure turned into a 5-on-5 on only a half court set.
Nine players present allowed Coach Logan to provide some hands-on lessons as the tenth man. Coach got game?
“Oh you didn’t know that I could play?”
As guys joke with Coach Logan on offense, it became apparent that the Thunder had team chemistry. It doesn’t hurt when most guys on the squad have played together through the streetball circuit, on the high school hardwood, or some other basketball occurrence early on.
As the stereotype of New York ball players who don’t play defense arises again, the question becomes: will the NYC Thunder prove that they are an all-around complete team?
According to Coach Logan, if the Thunder do this, they will go far with an already stacked roster of offensive threats.