Two-time NBA champion and 2021 Basketball Hall of Fame inductee Chris Bosh goes in-depth on the skills it takes to become a winner on the basketball court and in life. On this episode Bosh discusses the rare combination of talent and hunger, emulating others before becoming your own person, individual success vs. team success, the subjective traits that set championship teams apart, what it means to lead by example, where confidence comes from, and so much more.
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Bosh is widely regarded as one of the best big men of his generation and was part of the Basketball Hall of Fame’s celebrated Class of 2021. An 11-time NBA All-Star and 2008 Olympic Gold medalist, Bosh won two NBA titles with the Miami Heat after being drafted fourth overall in the 2003 NBA Draft by the Toronto Raptors. He spent 13 seasons in the NBA and is the author of the 2021 memoir, Letters to a Young Athlete.
Here are a few highlights from the conversation:
I saw those things, I retained those images, and really, just the feeling too. Once I felt what I felt when I watched these things, I felt like the whole world disappeared. If we’re watching the finals game, late night, I just felt like it was me and the TV. It could have been 100 people there.
Now it’s about the glory, it’s about the name on my back of my jersey. It’s about me establishing who I am and achieving and continuing to achieve great things because yeah, now I’m here and I see that from so many young athletes. They make the mistake of just saying, “I made it,” and they don’t have to work anymore. No, you have to continue to work. As a matter of fact, it gets harder because you’re making millions of dollars. Take money out of the equation, you can’t complain about money anymore.
The ultimate pinnacle for me as an athlete was just to go out there and express myself without thinking. That was the holy grail for me and so I just wanted to take in all that knowledge but then come approach each situation with an empty cup and just fill it and then just empty it again and just go through that continuous process.
So now it’s about performance, it’s about consistency, and it’s about doing your job and making sure you’re helping this team win and if not, there’s a problem. People will move, people get traded. It’s a harsh reality out there when you get into the pro levels.
It’s different now, everybody wants that moment, but do you want to put in the work? That’ll be the easiest thing you do is to pick up a trophy. Now do you want to go through everything in between that, and then once you’re successful, do you think that that’s going to make your life perfect? It will not.
But figuring out how to gel together as a team, yeah, it was difficult but it always is. There’s sacrifices that have to be made. You have to check your ego. In one way or another you have to be a leader to ensure that you guys can be successful.
That is indescribable. How about not quitting? How about you keep doing your job and matter of fact, let’s do it even better. Let’s turn it up a notch when it gets hard. That was the main difference that I saw that was really a huge, huge profound impact on me.
And so much more.