Ronny Musikitele is a contributing writer at Basketball Buzz, and a Communications Major at Carleton University. Ronny also works as an Intermediate Youth Worker with the Boys & Girls Club of Ottawa.
Basketball has been such an enjoyable sport for me throughout the years. Growing up, I knew at a very young age that I was in love with this sport. Why was I so fascinated by a ball going into a basket?
Well I have to tell you, scoring was not even my favorite part of the game when I was young. Yeah I know – weird right? I’ll tell you why: basketball to me was, and still, is the essence of teamwork, trust, and love. I am convinced that if you fail to use all three you will not be successful.
When I played football it was a rare thing for everyone I played with to touch the ball on the same play. It made me feel as though the offensive guys and defensive guys were on two completely different pages. We were barely on the same team. I lacked a sense of chemistry with the guys playing the opposite side of the ball as me, and quite frankly this disinterested me at a young age.
However, I remember when I first stepped on a basketball court after joining a league; and it was arguably the best a young man could feel. When I got in the game with four friends we were up by 10, and 5-minutes on the court we stretched the lead to 25. Of course everyone wants to win (and yes we did indeed win) but I have to tell you that the points did not even matter. We were just having so much fun on the court.
I have never seen so much teamwork, trust, and love all in one place like that first year of basketball. We played phenomenal defense, with everyone on the same page and everyone contributing to steals and stops. And it was just as amazing on offense – everyone would touch the ball, we always looked for the open player, we would all hustle on the fast break. And we would try to set up a teammate who hadn’t yet scored. It wasn’t hard to see that we loved playing with one another.
I remember when I was one of the only scoreless players, and my teammates did everything they could do to get me open just so I could get a bucket. I eventually hit a lay-up and was absolutely ecstatic! It was a true blessing for me – and it wasn’t even the scoring that made me happiest.
I was happy about how much teamwork, trust, and love went into that play and that basket. Such a beautiful combination. That moment right there was when I knew how much I love the game of basketball.
Photo: Runaway Digital Media