Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Tournament 4 - Lesson 2 - Trust

The cliche, "there is no I in team", rings true in Ultimate as much as any other sport. This weekend I watched our team move in between individual and team, and the moments of individuals trying to do too much were our low points. Our high points were when seven guys were all possible threats.

Pictured Above: Lonely discs by Jason Moy.

It comes down to the tricky balance of letting your studs play and dominate and your average player still being a contributor. If your studs are doing everything for the team then the opponent will key in on this and put extra effort in containing their game. This additional pressure in many cases can break a team that relies too much on a few people, and the people in major roles now have additional pressure, which in many cases results in them trying to do too much.

This is where trust comes in. Your studs need to trust all the supporting players to take some of the pressure and play a more balanced game. I saw this happen very clearly in the final game at Flowerbowl (though I'd like to see the footage to verify the fuzziness in my mind) when we got a few breaks against us we were only using three of our seven guys on the O-line looking off some easy throws. As soon as the balance was restored and we all trusted each other the four remaining players picked up their game and put the opponent in a spot where 7 guys were a threat.

We ended our weekend with success. The trick with balance and trust is it is a choice that might result in a loss in the short term, but in the long term the rewards can be great. Win or lose at Flowerbowl, the seven to ten supporting players who got touches because of the team's trust can now go into similar situations having experienced and performed successfully and adding even more balance to the team.



H2AZ said...

So true. In Ultimate, almost more than any other sport I've played, your team is only as good as the weakest player on the field, not the strongest.

Everyone needs to be a threat. All the time.