Answers to: What were the most enjoyable, easiest, or most satisfying of all the different basketball things you have done?

Since retiring from basketball as a physical participant on the basketball court, when I stopped officiating in 2013 I’ve been asked by some “Off the Rim” Column/BLOG readers and basketball others, of all of the different things you have done in basketball which was the most enjoyable which was the most asked question. Then it was which was the easiest, and most satisfying?

Told the people asking these 3 questions that before answering their questions would have to look at the 73 plus years of basketball participation of 8 different basketball experiences as follows:

1. player
2. coach,
3. official
4. author of 2 basketball books
5. shooting instruction camps and individual shooting lessons
6. Radio/TV basketball color commentator, and
7. currently as a fan and
8. basketball column and BLOG writer for the Bangor Daily News for all levels of basketball from middle schools to the Pros.

After being involved with basketball for so long and the interested people who asked the questions, I certainly wanted to answer that question truthfully as possible that were asked when I did not or were not able to answer given questions when the people asked me the questions right away for them.

But, did add that because of the length of 7 plus decades it would take me awhile to answer their 4 most asked questions.

However, with time and patience (neither of which comes in a prescription bottle), I finally got the time to write down the answers, so here goes an attempt to answer the 3 questions and to compare, rate and rank them.

Being a basketball jack-of-all-trades and master of none,
of 8 different basketball activities I have taken part in, officiating was the most enjoyable, as it was relaxing and fun. The other reasons were simple and are given directly below.

Most Enjoyable

1. Officiating-Slept very well after reffing games as Didn’t care who won or lost the game, still on the court, got excellent exercise and was paid well, especially college games.

2. Individual Shooting instructor/coach-seeing the student(s) improve, just pure coaching and no winning or losing

3. Radio/TV Color Commentator-didn’t care who won or lost, just spoke about what I saw and how I saw it

4. Writing-don’t care who wins or loses and way of giving back to the game, hope to help and inform any interested basketball person

5. Author-no winner or loser, hoping to help coaches and players at all levels

6. Player-could effect the winning or losing most

7. Coaching-could effect winning or losing, but not as much as a player

8. Fan-can’t effect winning or losing. Very, very frustrating

The Easiest

1. Radio/TV Color Commentator-just had to talk and give my opinion based on what I saw and on my years of experience of what was seen on the floor

2. Writing Column and BLOG-non physical, just mental thinking and putting the words on the computer

3. Authoring Books-non physical, same as writing, but was very time consuming

4. Officiating–physical, no winners or losers, exercise and good pay

5. Shooting Instructor/coach-one on one instruction and concentrating on just one player at a time

6. Playing-physical and easier to contribute to a win

7. Coaching-mental and harder to contribute to a wi

8. Fan, can’t effect the game like a player, coach or ref

Most Satisfying

1. Coaching-“Teaching the life lessons that cannot be taught or learned in the academic class room and had about 1/3rd of my players go into coaching

2. Individual Shooting Instructor/Coach-seeing individual student(s) being real coachable, improve and watch them be happy with their improvement, just plain pure individual one on one coaching

3. Playing-being able to contribute to the team

4. Officiating-only half right every time blew the whistle, easy way to contribute to the game, no winner/loser

5. Writing Column/BLOG-giving back to the game, trying to help all involved with the game, baaed on all years in basketball

6. Authoring Books-giving back to game by helping coaches and players

7. Radio/TV Color Commentating-giving back to game with my opinions based on all of my different basketball experiences

8. Fan-not giving back to game in any way and can’t effect outcome of game directly or in directly, again most frustrating of all if you care who wins or losses, or how well the game is played

So there are the lists in order of the 8 different basketball areas have had experience in over the years and the reasons for where they are rated or ranked on the 4 categories lists.

Hope this answers the questions that were asked sufficiently enough for those that took the time and interest to ask those questions.

Certainly consider myself very lucky, AM VERY THANKFUL AND VERY BLESSED BY THE LORD for the 73 years of great, positive, basketball experiences and memories.

Started with the game as a 2nd grader at age 7 when watching the 6th graders at the Abraham Lincoln Elementary School in Bangor play basketball outside at recess and lunch break.

The game was fascinating and mesmerizing and the biggest attraction and reason was that anyone could practice all the offensive skills with just a ball, a basket and yourself.

Went home and asked my Dad to put up a hoop off our garage, which he did, starting this long basketball career in the fall 1944.

Been extremely very fortunate, lucky and thankful to still be able to contribute to the game today considering having just turned 80 last week, by being able and allowed to give back to the game that has given me so much by writing the basketball column, “Off the Rim”, and basketball BLOG for the Bangor Daily News.

Base the writing of the column and BLOG on the 73 years of different basketball experiences in all of the 8 different areas of the game I took part in.

Wish to thank the people that asked the questions originally for being so patient and waiting for the answers. Some waiting for over a year. Wow, were they patience and as mentioned before, “time and patience” do not come in a prescription bottle, even at the drug store.

Also, would like to thank all the people that helped me, encouraged me, taught me, and supported me all the way thru my smorgasboarg of a basketball career.

But, indeed a very special thank you to my wife Judy who has put up with all the things (especially the time I spent away from her and the children) that you go thru when you have been involved with basketball for so many years in so many different time consuming basketball jobs.

But, my wife has been a great, supportive life’s partner as we just celebrated our 58th wedding aniversity this past August.