Why SAVI Coaching Exists

Have you ever had your joy stolen?

If you are reading this, chances are you or someone close to you loves basketball. I mean, lays awake at night loves basketball, plays well past exhaustion loves basketball, feels great all day after playing loves basketball and will sacrifice most anything to be good loves basketball.

If so, the ONE thing you should do is watch or share this video on Luka Doncic. More on that later.

Well if you know someone that loves basketball like I described above, then you also know a large part of how I feel about the game. In fact, my Dad has told me all my life that he doesn’t know how anyone could love basketball more than me. In fact, I’ve kept playing into my 40s, when my college teammates have long given it up. Few things in life have brought me joy like pursuing mastery in this game. And few things have broken my heart like most of my coaches have. Here are some vivid memories along my basketball journey.

In 8th grade, I was told by my AAU coach, after a loss, that I’d never play varsity basketball and that I should just quit now, because I didn’t have a future in it, I was slow, small and lacked the “it” factor.

As a sophmore in High School my varsity coach told me I’d never start for him, because the star player played my position and I didn’t have a chance in his program. He told me I had to transfer in hopes of a future that inclued a chance at playing in college.

As a Junior in High School, I was told I’d never play in college, because I was too small and not athletic enough. I drifted through the season riddled with self doubt.

As a Senior in High School, I was told to shoot less, if I missed I was yelled at and if I made a mistake I was pulled from the game. I played the season battling the coaching staff for freedom and fun.

I got a scholarship to play college basketball, the coach that recruited me, resigned before I played a game for him.

As a Sophmore in college I was asked to leave the team to make room for a D1 transfer that played my position and I had to transfer and start again.

As a Senior in college, I was told that if I missed a shot, I couldn’t shoot the rest of the game and played the season in fear and frustration.

My dream of playing professionally was was short and joyless.

Despite all those vivid and painful memories, I went to every practice excited to play the game I loved. Most practices and games, I left battered and frustrated that it wasn’t anything like what I hoped. I felt like I was in a war with my coaches, all through my organized basketball career.

In fact, my most joy filled experiences of playing basketball are from playing without coaches. The full days of pick up in the off-season, hitting open gyms through college, competitive runs all through my 20s and 30s, playing in prison games in the Bahamas and the years of high level pick up at PGC Basketball sessions over the 14 years of running those camps across the world. Playing marines on base in Japan and everything in between. Those were the most joy filled moments of playing basktball.

So, why did my orgainized basketball feel so much like a battle and the pick up basketball feel like poetry?

The answer is coaches. The way most coaches were coached is adversarial to the players, doesn’t value player experience and puts love of the game far down the list. So that’s why SAVI coaching exists. We want to change all that. We are on a mission to revolutionize the way the game is taught and played.

We believe in helping players become everything they’re meant to be. We believe basketball should be fun. We believe in establishing an identity of worth outside of the game.

We coach coaches to be the coach I wish I had.

We create systems to allow beautiful, player led poetry that is an expression of joy.

That’s SAVI.

If you want to be that coach, you’re in the right place. If you don’t resonate with any of that, then this isn’t for you, yet.

Thanks for reading, check out this video, we did a 10 game study on Luka, his game is poetry, and we unpack how yours can be too.

Sincerely, Tyler

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