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All great teams have one thing in common

Great teams, what can we say about them.

For one, they cause lots of excitement and attract a fan base visible all over the world. It causes controversy, inspires commercials, and sets up major retail sales in sports gear, sporting drinks and foods.

Sounds to me like it is a vital component of our economy whether we want to admit it or not. A few teams come to mind when I think of teams having a major influence, but the question that I have is what makes them exceptional.

Is it the money first or the quality of players first?

Take for example the old West Indies test team that was untouchable. That team had the four most devastating bowlers in Holding, Marshall, Garner and Roberts. This team ruled cricket in the 1970s through to the 1980s. As one great player left another great player would arrive, hence was their ability to dominate the rest of the world in cricket.

In NFL I think about the San Francisco 49ers under Joe Montana. The 49ers were just so enjoyable to watch. If one knows anything about NFL football they would know about timing patterns when the quarterback and the wide receivers are in sync.

Montana was exceptional and then there were others like running back Roger Craig or outstanding wide receiver Jerry Rice. This team played total football offence and defence. Everyone knew their role and played it unselfishly.

Then in football we have had several real good teams over the years, namely Real Madrid, Brazil, Manchester United, Liverpool, Ajax and I could name plenty more, but there is one team that stands out for their total game and that is none other than Barcelona.

This team is unique, very skillful with exceptional talent on the field and on the bench. It doesn’t even make sense starting to list the players because they all are outstanding in their right, but the difference is that they play as a team unselfishly.

What we miss about them is their style and gracefulness in passing the ball around because many focus on and are mesmerized by the tricks and highlights shown on television. The team have so many weapons and can hurt and expose a team from so many different angles that it makes them impossible to stop.

My question still is have they always been that great and how did it really happen?

We cannot forget basketball either as this is another sport that many Bermudians follow. Over the years again there have been several great teams. The LA Lakers, Boston Celtics, and Chicago Bulls.

All three teams had big followings when they were on top, and have proof of their success in different ways, but even being a Celtic fan I have to admire the Michael Jordan era.

In their day this team epitomized what a team is and should be about. Every player in this team understood their role and played to their strength and with that came success.

Example, Dennis Rodman the best rebounder basketball has probably ever seen. Nothing special about him, but he was able to rebound better than anyone in the sport and all he did was rebound and throw it out to a player then go right back near the basket looking for another rebound.

You would never see him trying to drive the ball to the basket or shoot three-pointers. He understood his role just like the rest of the team did and truthfully in my eyes the Chicago Bulls team under Michael Jordan goes down as one of if not the best teams ever in all of sports. Patrick Ewing and Charles Berkeley suffered because of this because had it not been for Michael Jordan and the Chicago Bulls they would have more than likely won an NBA Championship ring.

Coaches take note of the teams mentioned. I encourage you to have team discussions/debates about this article and try to get your players to understand their personal value to the team.

If a player knows his role in a team and does it to the best of his ability, eventually that will improve the overall team performance. Too often in our local sports we have players trying to do more than they are capable of resulting in the team’s weaknesses being exposed.

TEAM “Together Everyone Achieves More”.

When playing team sports you must rely on each other in order to have the greatest success. The better a player understands his ability and plays to his strengths the better the team will be. In team sports it can take only one player doing his own things to throw the team’s whole performance off.

For the more serious sportsmen in Bermuda I want to encourage you to study yourself, study your strengths and your weaknesses. Don’t be afraid to ask your coach to be specific as to what your role is in the team if you don’t know. Once you know your role then figure out how you can get the best out of yourself and what you have to do to play to your ultimate best while staying within your ability limitations.

This concept is not rocket science. What it is, is a mindset, we need to change our mindset. There will always be a superstar and you may not be it, but if you play your role the whole team could go down in history as the very best. We all can’t be the best at what we do, but we can always do our very best.

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Published November 18, 2011 at 1:00 am (Updated November 18, 2011 at 8:07 am)

All great teams have one thing in common

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