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Rentzias
01-29-2014, 05:08 PM
Quite a few articles piggybacking on Kobe's criticism of AAU basketball, and how it damages players by not focusing on fundamentals or not developing them correctly.

I think there are half-truths to each side: AAU exposes you to the highest level of talent in the nation, but also, yes, those games at times can appear to be BallIsLife/And1 windmill dunkfests.

However, I also feel the league gets more elites at a younger age because of the AAU. Bron, Melo, Curry, Kyrie, Durant, Love, Harden are among the AAU products I feel have reasonably strong fundamentals.


In an interview with Sports Illustrated's Lee Jenkins, Bryant bashed the AAU system and said he's glad he circumvented AAU ball by growing up in Italy.

"I was lucky to grow up in Italy at a time when basketball in America was getting f----- up with AAU shuffling players through on strength and athleticism," Bryant said. "I missed all that, and instead I was taught extreme fundamentals: footwork, footwork, footwork, how to create space, how to handle the ball, how to protect the ball, how to shoot the ball."

Bryant isn't the first current or former NBA star to come out as a critic of AAU. Charles Barkley has been railing on the system for years.

"AAU is the worst thing to happen to college basketball ever," Barkley said in 2011. "I hate AAU more than anything in the world. These kids arenít getting good coaching. They're playing too many games and not working on their game enough."

Even then, I think AAU basketball brings out the elites' potential much quicker by virtue of high level competition.

Is this hurting or helping the NBA game? Or are we still a few years out from really finding out?

t_money25
01-29-2014, 05:44 PM
I don't think AAU is to blame for this. If the writer thinks the youth aren't being coached well then blame those said individual coaches. To become an AAU coach all you need to do is pass a background check. You don't need prior coaching experience which leads to various degrees of basketball knowledge. As long as the team wants you as a coach and you can pass the background check then you're good.

Even if you take away AAU, these kids will play basketball somewhere else where you will probably have the same issues.

MrfadeawayJB
01-29-2014, 08:20 PM
When AAU is done right, it can be a great experience

Supreme LA
01-29-2014, 08:44 PM
AAU is the main reason there are no true back to basket playing centers today. The post game isn't emphasized in AAU.

Mr_Jones
01-29-2014, 08:49 PM
AAU is the main reason there are no true back to basket playing centers today. The post game isn't emphasized in AAU.

Never really thought about that. Could definitely be part of it.

bagwell368
01-29-2014, 09:54 PM
AAU:

At it's worst you have teams coached by guys that know nothing, players that cycle through one team after another without getting proper grounding. It can also emphasize hero ball. You can have meddling parents. Also some leagues are poorly integrated between great and awful teams, which is frustrating and not a good learning tool.

At it's best you have a highly motivated set of kids that want to learn, play, and win. After my first year I would tend to get the kids from parents that were good team players and not ball hogs since I sit those kids with great enthusiasm until they learn how to play. As a big guy I can tell you my C/F's got a lot of low post work, but when they have one season with you, there is no way to assure that they were taking their Mikan shots and baby hooks to high arc jump hooks with either hand. It can take years to build up to repeatability on those shots.

Like anything else - if run well it's great, and if not, then not.

BTW, the 3 point shot (and better technique on 2's resulting in better outside shooting) is far more pervasive in the decline of the low post game than AAU - be serious. Town travel teams and Jr/Sr High School teams play and practice far more than they did in the old days, and outside of the traditional time slot among the sports. Also some AAU teams also run in cooperation with school teams.

Rentzias
01-30-2014, 10:48 AM
BTW, the 3 point shot (and better technique on 2's resulting in better outside shooting) is far more pervasive in the decline of the low post game than AAU - be serious. Town travel teams and Jr/Sr High School teams play and practice far more than they did in the old days, and outside of the traditional time slot among the sports. Also some AAU teams also run in cooperation with school teams.
That's an excellent point that's already being reflected in the pros.

D-Leethal
01-30-2014, 11:04 AM
I appreciate the stances Kobe has taken against the new breed of NBA and NBA playing styles and I agree with it all wholeheartedly.

Rentzias
01-30-2014, 11:05 AM
I appreciate the stances Kobe has taken against the new breed of NBA and NBA playing styles and I agree with it all wholeheartedly.
Haven't looked, but have we had an era in the NBA with this many skilled young elites?

scissors
01-30-2014, 11:27 AM
The IQ of basketball is at an all time low. The AAU players in our High School program are incredibly talented morons. They have no fundamentals or bball IQ. They are just fast, can dribble and shoot well. We have taken serious steps to increase the necessity of strict fundamentals at our low system (10u-14u) so that as players begin to enter AAU programs they already have the fundamentals.

We have this amazing soph who can't understand why its stupid to pass up an open 3 and then 5 seconds later shoot a long 2 with a hand in his face.

scissors
01-30-2014, 11:28 AM
Also defense isn't even a part of AAU as far as I see.

Heediot
01-30-2014, 11:45 AM
Handchecking rules in today NBA help perimeter guys with handles develop faster than anyone else.

Chronz
01-30-2014, 07:32 PM
Its not AAU, its science. The fundamentals the less fortunate have grown up on have changed, this was happening since the advent of the 3pt line/palming regulations.