Quitting Your Sport, Is It The Right Move? (Why I Quit Basketball)


Ok before we get into the article, yes, I do know this is a fitness blog, but you can only write about “hypertrophy” so many times before you start to get a little burnt out.

So instead of taking a break, and putting a stop to the content machine that is me, I’ve decided to let myself write about something that I’ve been wanting to write about forever now, and that is the topic of athletes quitting their sport.

Specifically, athletes quitting their sport in the name of gains. And by athletes I mean me, and by sports I mean basketball. And boom, you got yourself the title, why I quit basketball for sick gains.

Why Did I Quit Basketball?

I have briefly discussed this topic in multiple articles, most notably the articleMy Personal Fitness Journey“, which was basically me explaining my whole athletic/fitness history.

I did talk about my basketball experience quite a bit in that article but it was definitely the B story, as my weightlifting journey was the primary focus of the material.

Which is why today I want to give you a full breakdown of my 5ish-year basketball career, and how, and why it ended somewhat prematurely.

Editors Note*– This is essentially a career retrospective, this article is more of a long-form essay, than an actual blog post, so strap in as this is gonna be a long one.

I’m going to be doing a lot of this from memory as I have almost no videos, stat sheets, or photos from this time, as I just couldn’t really be bothered to take any. I will be instead using memes as my main form of media.

With that let’s start from the beginning.

How Did I Get Into Basketball

So I got into basketball 2 and a half years before I even knew what weightlifting was. It was the summer of 2016 and the week before I was going to start the 7th grade. One of my friends asked me if I wanted to go play some pick-up basketball.


I was a little hesitant at first as at this time I was a little butter ball that did nothing but eat pizza pockets and play X-box(imagine Eric Cartman from SouthPark), which is so weird looking back now, as I went from being the husky kid to being the skinny kid, to the athletic kid, all the way to the meat head.

My mom convinced me to go out and play because she knew if I didn’t make friends now I would grow up to make sigma edits on tik tok later on. So, I decided to go out and give basketball a shot.

I remember being pretty ass starting out, I mean I was 12 years old playing with 9th, and 10th graders so it was kind’ve expected. I had some flashes of greatness though, or at least I would like to think that I did. I got a block or 2 on the backup high school point guard, which would be like my rookie-year promotional highlight if I was in the NBA.

I was pretty tall for my age, about 5’5, had a decent wing span and was pretty fast when I wanted to be. I wasn’t a crazy specimen or anything, but there was like low-level college basketball potential.

Turns out, even though I wasn’t absolutely amazing, or super talented, I actually enjoyed playing basketball and continued to play for fun.

Which is really weird to say, especially now that I know how it ends.

Ok, let’s fast forward a little bit. The date is March 2017(I think), and I have improved a decent amount from when I first started.

I’ve been practicing on my own, getting a little bit of coaching here and there from older players, and am playing slightly better comp.


I developed most of my skills by watching YouTube videos and copying NBA player highlights. I had some good fundamental moves. I was able to finish pretty well with my right hand, I was able to perform all of the basic dribble moves i.e. between the legs, behind the back, cross-overs, in and outs, and hesitations.

And I had also sprouted up to 5’9 and was much skinner due to the growth spurt, which also made me quicker, faster, and more explosive. All these things led to me coming back from spring break as a totally different player.

I grew up in a small town, and we had quite a big pool of basketball players from the years 2017-2019. We had a forester that would rent out the high school gym every night for scrimmages, and every hooper in the town would go play.

I started going to these scrimmages probably about a month after getting into ball, and would mostly be relegated to sitting on the sidelines. In the small chance I did get to play, I would mostly be out there doing cardio, as who the hell in their right mind would pass the ball to a 5’5 120 lb, kid.

That all changed after spring break as I was now 5’9 still 120 lbs, unfortunately, but I could run the break, dribble, pass, finish, play some defence, and hit the occasional jump shot. I remember just showing up one night to a scrim, and just going off.

I had all of my team’s points and was having to go up against some of the best hoopers my town had to offer. I even had one dude call me the prodigy, which I definitely let go to my head at the time.

Now- it may sound like I’m just sucking myself off right now, which I am, but don’t worry my ass eats humble pie plenty throughout this 5 year time span a lot more often than I succeed.

However, for now, let’s keep talking about my rise, trust me it will make the next 2 years of failure, and under performing much more enjoyable.

So 7th-grade ends and I am 5’10.

I’m growing like a weed. I’m almost 6ft tall at 12 years old. A betting man would guess I would grow to at least 6’3, in all reality, I was just an early bloomer, and hit my growth spurt early. By the end of summer, I was 6’0, and have remained there ever since. Funny enough I was only the third tallest kid in my class, as that year we had 2 kids that were 6’1 by the end of grade 7.

One of them went on to be my rival/teammate for years to come, and the other was just TFN(tall for nothing). The summer leading up to my freshmen year(which is grade 8 in Canada), all I did was hoop, game, wank, and just do stuff any horny 12/13 year old would do with unlimited free time.

Basketball-wise, I was mainly interested in working on my finishing and dribbling. I didn’t really care about shooting or defence as I deemed them as “boring”.

The defence wasn’t too much of a problem as I ended up becoming a better defender as I got older, but the lack of interest in shooting really came back to bite me in the ass down the road.

Freshmen Year: Draft Bust


Now for those of you who are just here to see me fail, well rejoice as I share with you 2 seasons of disappointment. Well, it’s not all bad, there are some glimpses of greatness, however, they are few and far between.

Going into 8th grade I’m still riding the high of being the quote, on quote prodigy. I got my fancy lay-ups, somewhat nice dribble package, and am doing my thing at practices, and scrimmages.

I’m adjusting to high school, and am already missing my smoke show of a 7th-grade teacher (she was hot AF). So the hype is only growing, and the team decided to make me the starting small forward, even though I had never played a game of regulated, competitive basketball my entire life, and I’m starting to feel some of the pressure.

In the 2 weeks leading up to our first game, I was a nervous wreck. It was a rivalry game, and there were things being said back and forth on social media. I personally said I would drop at least 15 in my first game, not knowing how hard it is to score on a real, well-coached defence.

Now I was a pretty anxious teenager, I mean most of us were. I was the type to get nervous in crowded areas, and when talking to girls.

I didn’t have crippling anxiety that stopped me from functioning, but I certainly wasn’t what you would call smooth.

Now imagine my reaction when I realized that I would be having to try and upstage are rival in front of a packed gymnasium, in an away game, after being proclaimed the quote-on-quote prodigy.

I was shook. The worst part was, there were a bunch of hot snow bunnies watching, which only added to the stakes. Now I was also a 120lb 13-year-old playing against a senior team, full of athletic, fast, and skilled 10th, 11th, and 12th graders.

If this was a couple of years later I probably would’ve smoked them, but I mean I’m not even halfway through puberty yet. I was fucked.

I was visibly nervous, I’m pretty sure the whole arena could see it at this point. Before jump ball, you know when all of the teams line up and shit, one of the seniors from the other team comes up to me and says “hey is this your first game”?

I just respond with “yeah”. He asks if I’m nervous, and in the least convincing tone possible I tell him “no dude, I’m just excited”. He smiles and tells me good luck.

I’m shitting bricks at this point, especially after seeing that I was going to be matching up against a 6’4 guy, with a fully-grown mustache… What the fuck? Yeah like I was tall, but this guy is like tall, tall.

I mean I actually didn’t do too bad on defence, the guy was kind’ve ass. Anyway jump ball begins, and I’m still taken aback, still having my holy shit, this actually happening moment.


The meme says it all, that’s exactly how it felt. For those of you who have played NBA 2ks my career mode, then you’d know what it’s like switching the difficulty from rookie or pro, to HOF(hall of fame). You can’t score, you get absolutely cooked on defence, you get no rebounds, and you have a turnover count that would make Russell Westbrook blush.

It was actually a great reality check that I really needed at the time. I’m pretty sure a few of my teammates were happy to see me humbled as well. After about 4 minutes of running around like a headless chicken, coach finally had enough, and pulled me out.

I didn’t get totally cucked on PT(playing time) that game like I thought I would, I actually got out there quite a bit (mainly due to our team being complete ass). I didn’t score, I had 1 steal, a couple of rebounds, and maybe an assist or 2.

I definitely had my work cut out for me, and knew I had a long way to go before I was even dropping 15 ppg, let alone the 20-25 I thought I would average for my high school career.

I mean I still had to get my first bucket, which looking back is pretty fucking embarrassing to say. Anyways we get on the bus, head home, and rest up. We had to be up early for a 9:00 am game. Oh yeah, I forgot to mention this is a tournament. So are 9:00 am was an absolute slaughter.

We played a team with a super athletic big, surrounded by shooters.

One of our guys actually got dunked on, on a fast break. It was fucking brutal man.

I of course did fuck all that game. All I really remember was bricking a three, that’s about it.

Are next, and last game was my, and my team’s best game of the whole tournament.

I don’t know how a game where I get injured halfway through gets considered as the best, but I had played so badly up to that point it really didn’t matter what I did, as long as I wasn’t complete garbage.

I finally broke the ice and got my first bucket. It was actually off of a euro step and-1, but I didn’t get to shoot the free throw because I rolled my ankle on the way down.

Up to that point I was also playing some solid defence, I wasn’t prime Gary Payton or anything, but I was starting to become the clear-cut best backup small forward, just because, well like I usually say on this blog, “genetics”.

I was long, fast, and athletic. I didn’t have much skill, had no basketball IQ, and was a nervous wreck but my natty attributes made up for it.

So after I rolled my ankle I was out for the rest of the game, and therefore the whole tournament.

So the tournament was actually the week before Christmas break, which gave me almost a month to think about what I needed to do in order to not suck before our next game. So what did I do with all that free time?

Did I grind, work on my skills, lift weights? Fuck no, I played video games, jacked off, and didn’t do anything conducive to basketball for the whole break.

It was still something I just did for fun. I did still practice on my own, but it was more just shooting around, and trying out different moves I saw on Instagram or YouTube at half speed.

We had 2 team practices over the break, which helped me retain some skills and a decent level of cardio. By the time the break had finished, I had made absolutely no progress, but I was nice and fresh.

Our next game was in a week, so that meant I had the next 7-days to get into competing shape which didn’t take long as I was 13 years old, which made it almost impossible for me to ever get out of shape.

The week passes, and it’s game day. I get my second start because a few of our players couldn’t play, and I have an alright game for a rookie. I had 4 points, no misses, a couple of assists, a block, and quite a few rebounds, to go along with some solid defence.

I was at mid-level role player tier. A solid piece that could give you a little bit of everything(except shooting).

I had made some improvements from the previous tournament that I mainly attribute to just being more comfortable in a game-like environment.

We still lost the game mainly due to bad luck. Are starting center got a tech mid-game for eyeballing a ref, and are starting shooting guard got their ribs fractured on a layup gone very, very wrong.


Would we still have won if are already depleted team didn’t lose 2 starters, maybe, you never know with these things. It could’ve gone either way, to be honest. Anyways we get back on the bus and head home. I’m feeling pretty good on the bus ride home, as I had a fairly solid game, and everyone was starting to get back on the Pollard hype train.

The next game was going to be an important one, as it would determine the team’s seeding in JNAT (junior all-native tournament). Oh yeah, I played on 2 different basketball teams as well, the high school team, and the JNAT team.

The rosters were pretty similar with the JNAT team being a bit deeper. Yeah so the pressure was back, and even more so as my parents and almost my whole community would be there watching, which just really helped with my anxiety.

*I had no more problems with talking to girls and handling social situations after this shit.


I won’t lie I shit the bed on this one. I mean my whole team did, we got blown out by like 30. I dropped a goose egg(had no points), had quite a few turnovers, played shit defence, and was overall a net negative for the team.

I went from being one of the better players on the team to looking like I got paid off by draft kings to make sure that my team lost. Yeah, it was probably one of my worst, if the not worst game I played, definitely a contender.

It was inexcusable I just choked. I knew it was because of my nerves, I just couldn’t handle the pressure.

I had enough skill, height, speed, and agility to contribute, I just didn’t have the mental part of the game down. This is the team’s last game before JNAT, so I have to get my shit together pretty quickly here. I had about a month, and a half to get my mind right, and ready to compete.

I went to scrims, tried to make it to all of the team practices, and worked on my skills here and there, however being a 13-year-old I still spent a fair share of time dicking around, and not taking the sport seriously.


Eventually, the tournament came, and I was heading off to Vancouver to go play in my first JNAT.

So we get to the hotel and the whole team is there.

Well, not just the team but the whole goddam community.

I had to ball out. Alright fast forward to Monday, and it’s our first game.

It’s against these wolf dudes(forgot the team name), and I won’t lie they have a pretty solid roster.

Now judging from the photo above I’m pretty sure you can tell where this is going, and yes the quote, on quote prodigy drops another goose egg, in a crucial game. I just ate my feelings away at some food court in the mall thinking dam, maybe this basketball thing isn’t for me.

Now, this is the first time I ever thought of quitting ball, don’t worry I don’t and won’t for a while, but I was considering it. So the day passes, I get a good nights rest and now it’s time for game 2.

We are on the ropes. We’re in the loser’s bracket, the whole teams underperforming (it wasn’t just me), and coach is pissed. If we lose this game we go home.


Coach gives the “get your shit together speech”, asking us why the fuck did we come here, I thought you guys were basketball players, but all I see are a bunch of fucking pussies. Get your shit together and mop the floor with these losers.

The speech worked, and we proceeded to absolutely obliterate the other team. I think we beat them by like 44, best part was I had a career-high 10 points.

Yeah, I know pretty sad, but I was supposed to be playing in U13, I was instead playing up in U17 so I was happy with it. Anyways, we dominate, I have a good game, and the whole team has a photo opp after.

So the third game happens and the whole team just collapses. First are best player gets injured, next everyone just shits the bed, me included, and last the other team is just way better. We lose, by a lot, and I’m ready to go home as I need a break from basketball.

Now all the other players stayed to watch the rest of the tournament because I don’t know, they like watching others win I guess (fucking cucks).

My family just wants to get home, me included so we leave.

And that was my first official basketball season, in the books.

I would have to say that although I did have some flashes of greatness, all in all, I did not live up to the expectations that myself and others set for me that year.

First Off-Season

I want briefly to touch on my 2018 off-season as this was an important one. After the tournament, I was definitely dealing with some basketball burnout as I didn’t show up to scrimmages for a month and just wanted to distance myself from the sport for a while.


I made a comeback in May for a May long weekend street ball tournament. My team won, and I kind’ve got back into a groove with the sport.

A little after Mayday a semi-pro basketball player showed up for a basketball clinic in our humble small town. Most of the team went to the clinic, and a couple of us had the “honour” of getting posterized, me included, after the camp the semi-pro came up to me and said I had potential.

He told me I have quite a bit to work on, but if I get my shit together I could probably play at the college level. That’s all I needed, my ego had been stroked and my motivation had returned tenfold.

That same weekend my uncle from my dad’s side came to visit, pissed out of his mind of course. He was an ex-athlete, like a real athlete. He had played college football, had done amateur boxing in the past, and also played basketball in high school.

He was telling me about how he used to posterize dudes on the regular, at the height of 5’10, which is pretty impressive. I asked him how he did it, and in his drunken stooper, he told me to run, do push-ups, and jump.


I took his advice to heart and started running, jumping, and doing push-ups, almost on a daily basis.

I eventually bought ankle weights too and started wearing them everywhere.

In reality, they did fuck all, but hey I guess it’s the heart that counts.

Anyways I’m starting to take the sport more seriously making more time to train, and work on my game.

When summer break came I upped the intensity to 11, playing basketball all day, and all night. I was 13, turning 14 at the time so overtraining didn’t really apply to me as I was just a kid.

My days consisted of basketball, swimming, wanking, and even more basketball. I was obsessed and actually ended up getting heat exhaustion a couple of times, having to go to the ER on one of those occasions for fainting during a pickup game.

The summers where I lived would get absurdly hot, especially for Canada with some days getting up to 45 degrees Celsius, or 113 degrees Fahrenheit for any Americans reading this. I got to play against pretty decent comp, usually people at, a little below, or above me in terms of basketball ability.

I believe my skills as a basketball player improved tremendously that summer. Now in terms of my physical attributes, my speed, strength, and overall size remained the same, which really held me back in the upcoming season.

Sophomore Year: My 2011


Now if you’ve been an NBA fan for a bit now, you probably know about the shit show that was the 2011 Miami heat. Good start, a great playoff run, and one of the biggest finals collapses in NBA history. I would say that the 2011 heats season perfectly mirrored, both my, and my team’s 2019 season as a whole.

I’m LeBron of course in this scenario, ok maybe not but I want to be.

Anyways I was feeling pretty good coming into my sophomore season. I had worked my ass off in the off-season working on my skills relentlessly. I was also doing callisthenics, plyos, and cardio, every now and then as well.

My confidence was definitely not as high as it should’ve been. Looking back I was at worst the 4th best player on the team that season, and at my best one of the top 3, if not #1.

I definitely should’ve been more aggressive with my shot selection, and should’ve taken way more shots. Now our first game that year wasn’t until early November so I still had tons of time to work on some skills and improve my game.

Most of my time was allocated towards improving my jump shot, ball handling, and finishing skills.

Basically, anything that was easy to work on alone, as are practice mainly consisted of cardio, pick and rolls, and scrims.

Which meant tons of solo work for me during my off time.


I really wanted to play well this year as to make up for my lacklustre freshmen year. By the time our first game rolled around, I was feeling pretty good and was the most confident going into this game I had ever been(up to that point).

2 nights before the game we had a scrimmage where I went off, and was hitting everything I looked at. I was finally starting to become a decent shooter, which really opened up my game. So we’re actually playing the team that had knocked us out of JNAT last year, on their home floor, so there’s definitely bad blood heading into this game.

Their team got a lot worse losing their all-star point guard, and big man duo, while our team lost some seniors but are young core improved significantly as we now had a very solid starting 5. I was part of this revamped starting 5 as I was now the starting power forward.


So I predicted a 20-piece heading into the game, and only ended up getting 12, but I had a damn near-perfect game only missing one shot. I played some solid defence, got some assists, and rebounds, and overall had a pretty good game.

We still just narrowly edged out a win, winning by a few free throws. I was absolutely exhausted by the end of the game, having to play 37 out of 40 minutes due to us having an almost unplayable bench.

Are starting lineup got a lot better from the previous year, but we lost a shit ton of depth since 3 of our players aged out. This would improve throughout the season though, as rookies started getting better, and we also acquired a few more players as well.

Now we actually decided to play the team again right on the same day, as they wanted a rematch, and it would also be a good way to decide who was the better team, as this would be the trilogy game.

We ended up kicking their ass this time.

I had a less impressive game this time only dropping 10 on some slightly less efficient shooting splits, but I was still recovering from playing 37 minutes.

This game was less close with us beating them by a comfortable 10 points. So we were now officially the better team, beating them twice on the same day, which made us feel very good going into the winter break.


I was now one of the better players on the team, scoring double digits in back-to-back games, with high efficiency.

I was also getting quite a bit of praise for my performance, and finally being recognized as one of the better basketball players in my area.

So going into winter break, I’m more motivated than ever to improve as a basketball player.

This led to me training during winter break outside in the cold, which also led to me getting very sick.

I had the flu for almost all of winter break, which was not fun. I lost a shit ton of weight, going from 130 to 115 lbs. My stomach was getting absolutely raped left right, and center.

Oh yeah, this is also the infamous Christmas when my dad introduced me to weight training, which would eventually be the thing that led to the death of my basketball career because well, basketballs horrible for gains.

So I started to do some weight training here in there, thinking dumbbell flys would somehow help me dunk. Yeah, I was a total bro back then. Anyways my flu starts to fade away, so I get back into basketball full swing while doing weight training, callisthenics, and cardio on the side, because why not.

We get back to school and are principal announces that we will be playing in a junior basketball tournament this coming weekend. Now that’s a big wake-up call for our team as a lot of us either got sick, injured, or did fuck all over the break.

We have to get back into shape, build our chemistry back, and also get accustomed to our new coach, in just a week’s time.

I bust my ass all week trying to get back into game shape and by the time the tournament came, I was at about 75%. I and the team definitely fell off a bit compared to our previous game.

We got unlucky and drew the best team in the tournament that wasn’t us for our first game, and we lose by 6. Now we definitely should’ve won that game as are whole team aside from one guy played like shit.

I only had 6 points that game, and just didn’t feel confident going in. We missed a lot of shots and got destroyed on the glass.


Our defence was also atrocious, with me and are center having to pick up a lot of the slack due to are guards not being able to stay in front of their match-ups for shit. We easily could’ve won if we made more shots, and got a few more stops.

So we head home, rest up and prepare to redeem ourselves in the next game.

The next day we get news that we’ll be missing are star shooting guard because his ride broke down, so we’re one man short going into the game which means we’ll be bringing some rookies up to play with us.

The whole team goes off, and we absolutely destroy the other team, I have 8 points, and have a pretty underwhelming game. I’m definitely not playing my best, and am starting to feel the effects of my 2-week layoff.

We have one more game and need to win it to get second place in the tournament. Now I want to redeem myself in this game, and want to have a good performance to help build some momentum for the rest of the season.

The game starts and I’m just chucking up shots. I think went 0-5, and 0-2 from the free throw line before I score my first points. I only score 2 points in the first half, and head into halftime pissed.


After a little soul-searching the 2nd half starts and we’re down 6.

I get my shit together and start scoring. I helped lead our team to a 2nd half run that led to us beating the other team by 20.

I have about 10 in the second half, and get player of the game for leading our team during our second-half run, and am feeling pretty good about myself.

I finally felt like I had made it back to my previous level of ability, even though I was a lot less efficient.

So we get are second-place trophy, and head home.

Our next game was about 5 days after the tournament, and we get a pretty easy win.

I get 8 that game and have one of the most inefficient games of my career going 0-5 from 3. I was pretty trigger-happy from the 3-point line this game, letting that player of the game go to my head.

We’re now 5-1 on the season and we have a decent amount of momentum now. I really want to average more points but due to players stepping up, and others improving, I start to get fewer shots, and less PT, which results in me having to be more of a system player.

We cruise are way to 3 more wins, and we’re now 8-1 on the year, going into this years JNAT.

Now are JNAT team is stacked, we have 4 all-star level players now, with a 6’6 center that joined our team with about a month left on the season, are 2 guards, and my classmate who had made major strides that year, AKA he hit puberty and grew to 6’3.

We also have 4 very solid starter-level players with me, my other classmate that had made major strides that year, are back up shooting guard, and are rookie of the year who had stepped up and became a solid backup forward.


We’re going into JNAT with a big 4, and we’re 8 useful players deep. What could go wrong? We have a deep, talented roster, we have size, shooting, and defence. Now is our best chance to make a run.

Due to bad luck, we match up with one of the best teams in the tournament for our first game. Talent wise we’re pretty even, however chemistry, and coaching-wise, we’re worlds apart. We get dropped the fuck off in this game.

We lose by like 25, I only drop 4, and have a very lacklustre performance, along with the rest of the team. Are 6’6 center drops 20, he’s the only one on our team who has a half-decent game, and we’re now at the same spot we were in last year.

Backs against the wall, balls deep in the loser’s bracket, 0-1 in the tournament, and we have no choice but to make a run.

I go back to my hotel room and don’t talk to anyone. I’ve been in a rut for quite a bit, coming off of 2 pretty bad performances. I want to go the fuck off in this game and feel more ready than ever. The team thinks we’re going to do what we did last year, and blow out this team by 30.

So backs against the wall how do we respond? Well, we pull a 2011 Miami heat and lose to a team that we should’ve beaten by 15.

I told you this was my 2011, and I’m not Dirk. We shit the bed, in more way than one.

Before the game even starts we lose our second-best shooter because of some off the court bull shit.

That aside the first quarters pretty close.


I get 6 in the first and am having a pretty good game so far. Then out of nowhere are starting center gets 3 fouls in the span of 2 minutes, so we had to take him out of the game for a bit.

Then, if that wasn’t enough are 2 all-star guards get into a fight(verbal not physical), and are power forward gets lock jaw after getting elbowed in the face on a freak play.

Almost all of the starters get taken out, I have to play point guard(even though I’ve never played point guard my entire life up to this point), and have to lead a very depleted bench unit for 4 minutes.

Now I’ve played the whole first quarter, I’m pretty tired, and now have to play a position I have never played. I have no shooting around me, I can’t shoot that good myself. My next best player is a rookie, and I have to try and solo squad a team full of Pat Bevs.

So maybe if this was later on in my career I would’ve done better, but this is the first time that I’ve ever been the #1 option, and my inexperience really started to show.

My coach is doing fuck all, telling me to run some motion(we haven’t run motion all season), the bench is yelling a bunch of incoherent bullshit, and the 2nd stringers out there with me look as dumbfounded as I do.

We were so fucked. The other team smelled blood and went on a 10-0 run. We were getting run out of the building, and I was getting a fuck ton of heat from the team. I tried to drive, but with the lack of shooting they could just wall me off every time I tried to get into the paint.


The coach finally starts to rotate starters back in, but it’s not enough to stop the bleeding and we head into halftime down 20. We are so fucked. We thought we were going to cruise to a win before the game and now were on life support.

We go into the locker room and the whole team is in disarray. Players yelling at coaches, players yelling at players, and I’m just in there thinking fuck, well at least I have 3 more years of eligibility.

There isn’t a saving grace speech from the coach this time, as are new coach is more of the strong silent type and just takes all of the insults on the chin. He knows we’re fucked, the players know we’re fucked, and oh yeah did I forget to mention that we were fucked.

So we pull out the big guns and put all the starters in. We struggle to get any momentum going as the other team does not let up.

Eventually, our starting center fouls out, and the better half of our star guard duo just gives up and refuses to play. As soon as the coach swaps them out for our 2 best bench players we go on a run.

Our team just clicks, we close the gap, and make it a 6-point game. I have 10 points and have gotten 3 monster blocks, that would’ve been considered a hate crime if I did them in 2023.

But by this point, it’s too little too late, and the other team dribbles out the clock, ending our season.


The locker rooms a shit show. Guys are trying to fight each other, the coach is having a mental breakdown, and I couldn’t give fewer shits.

Are future looks very uncertain, but something needs to change, and it has to change fast.

Now I didn’t have my best game, but it definitely wasn’t my worst.

I didn’t feel too bad heading back to the hotel and just pinned the loss on everyone else. All I knew was that I definitely had to put in some work this off-season.

There was going to be no time off this year, I was going to have to start taking lifting more seriously, I was going to have to improve my guard skills, and I was going have to become more athletic if I wanted to become the player I wanted to be.

Second Off-Season


The off-season of 2019 was a special one. It definitely wasn’t the most motivated I ever was, but it’s definitely up there. As soon as I got back from JNAT I got to work. There wasn’t going to be a one-month break from basketball, like last year.

I’m going to be a fucking all-star next season, or I’ll fucking die trying. I started lifting, and working out more, I was playing basketball almost every day, and I had all the motivation and energy in the world.

I was going to do whatever it took to right the wrongs of my previous season and my JNAT choke job. God must have been watching, as he decided to give me an +5 to all of my athletic attributes.

I went from not being able to touch the rim whatsoever, to being able to grab it and hang off it. This improved my driving, and overall-explosiveness tremendously. After school ended I got a job as a dishwasher to pay for a gym membership.

This is where I really started to get into lifting and bodybuilding. I did a lot less skills training that off-season and mainly focused on my strength, speed, agility, and cardio. I realized that skills don’t mean shit if I’m bigger, stronger, and faster than you.

Also are all-star power forward/center, switched schools and moved to an entirely different city which was fucking amazing for me, as I was now automatically the third option on offence.

A lot of things went right that summer. It felt like my hard work was paying off.

I actually got to play quite a bit of pick-up basketball against some pretty good comp that off-season to. Me, some of my teammates, some local ballers, and some college athletes who got summer jobs as firefighters would like to get runs in.

We had some pretty intense games, and I got to practice driving on big athletic defenders, which really helped me improve my finishing skills for the next season.

When September rolled around I felt more ready than I had ever been.

No one was going to stop me that season, and I was finally going to have my breakout year.

I had worked my fucking ass off all summer and wasn’t going to let anyone ruin my dream season.


Junior Year: The Last Chance

So this was it. I’m no longer a rookie, the roster got thinned out over the off-season, and I’m now at worst the third-best player on the team. A couple of months before the season starts I end up trying out for team BC. I try out for the U16 team, while 1 of my older teammates tries out for U19.


I’m the only one who manages to get an invitation to the 2nd tryout, which is in Richmond BC. Now, this 2nd tryout consists of the 50 best basketball players in BC, of first nation descent, in my age group. I think this was the first time that I really got to see how big the talent pool was in BC.

It was also the first time that I played against really, really good competition. Now I had played against great high school players in the past, but this is the first time where every dude on the court was good. There was no weak link out there.

My cardio got tested hard that day, and my game got tested even harder. They weren’t calling fouls during the tryouts so we were hacking the fuck out of each other.

We had 2 kids tear their ACLs, it was fucking nuts man. I struggled as, well I was good, but a lot of these guys were just better. All of my drives were heavily contested, guys would press you from half-court, and the step up in competition really caught me off, guard.

I didn’t make the team, but I did get pretty far, making it to the top 25. Even though I didn’t make the team, I was more confident than ever coming back from the tryouts.


The team BC coach said I just narrowly got cut, telling me that if I worked on my fundamentals, jump shot, and improved my playmaking that I would be a lock for the U19 roster in the upcoming years.

My ego had been stroked once more, and even better the day after I got back I found out that we would be playing our first game of the season in 2 weeks.

After having to play against a bunch of the best BC had to offer, I felt pretty good going into our first game. Those 2 weeks flew by and I am pumped. I’ve been waiting for a chance to redeem myself for last year’s failure, for almost 8 months now.

If I played badly in this game, I probably would’ve just quit then in there. I needed to have a good game, I had to prove that I was a real third option and that all that shit I did in the off-season wasn’t just a huge waste of time. I popped 2 scoops of pre-workout for good luck and put on my headphones.


The warm-up felt like it took forever.

Finally, the game starts, and that pre-workout I took earlier is really starting to kick in now. We get the ball and I run down the court and get a layup. A couple of possessions later and I already have 8 points.

Every time I get the ball I barrel my way into the paint, and score at will. Nobody can stop me. Double teams, triple teams, their big man, nothing is stopping me from putting my ball in their basket (pause).

Everything I did that game worked, whether it was a drive to the rim, a roll off of a screen, or a post-up. As long as I stepped into the paint I was scoring. I ended the game with 20+ points, a couple of blocks, some steals, and 4-6 rebounds.

Finally, I had lived up to my potential. After all those years of fucking grinding, underperforming, and failure, I had finally broken through. Words cannot describe how great this felt.

Winter break comes, and I’m really getting into weightlifting now. I’m going to the gym 6 plus days per week, on my shitty PPL split, and am really enjoying my time off. I don’t touch a basketball for 2-weeks.

I did do cardio over the break, but 30 minutes on the treadmill a couple of times per week will not keep you in basketball shape.

So I get back to school, and just like last year, we will be playing in a basketball tournament after the break.

However, this one is against some pretty good comp, so we can’t just walk our way to a 2nd place trophy this time.

It takes me a bit longer than expected to get back into a basketball groove.

What do I mean by that, well just like last year my performance falls off a cliff after the break.


I went into the tournament thinking I can walk my way to another 20 piece, which was not the case. We head to our 9 am, turned 10 am due to some scheduling issues very sleepy and very sloppy.

The fire and motivation I had going into that season was nowhere to be found going into this tournament. I was more concerned with bicep pumps, and my kind’ve sharp abs at the time, to really get into a competing mood, which resulted in me having one of the worst games of my career.

I fall back into old habits and only score 6 points, with a bunch of turnovers to follow. Not only that but I end up fouling out of the game due to being out of shape, and not being able to play proper defence. This game set the tone for the rest of the tournament.

I would go on to score 13, and foul out, then score 10 and also foul out. The fouling problem didn’t just affect me as the whole team was in foul trouble. We end up going 2-1 losing our first game, then winning the next 2, but this tournament was definitely a wake-up call for me, and I realized that I had to get my shit together.

I wanted to lay low for a while and skipped school for a couple of days, just doing classes online, and going to the gym. I go back to school on Thursday to redeem myself in a home game. I’ve had a decent amount of time off now, so I’m very fresh. I stay after school and have like a 4 hoop sess before the game to help me get my mind right.


A lot of the team was feeling pretty burnout after the tournament, except me after skipping school for 3 days. I felt nice and fresh, and ready to make up for the shit show that was my annual post-Christmas break tournament fuck up.

This was the first time I got to play in front of my hometown this year and I did not disappoint. I had to be numero uno in this game. My whole team was off, which meant I had to pick up the slack. I and the only other 10th grader on the team had to will ourselves to a win that game. He had 13, and I had 16 points.

Are opponents were matching us shot for shot, but we didn’t let up. I had some pretty nice highlight plays this game, and hit some of my best in-game finishes to date. I sealed the game with a pull-up middy and almost made everyone forget how badly I had played in the tournament last weekend.

You could definitely say I was an inconsistent player, going from looking like an all-star, back to a net negative, to looking like the best player on the team.

You never knew what you were gonna get with me. I myself didn’t even know what to expect going into games, as I’m either on or off, no in between.

I was happy with my performance, but to be honest I just wanted to get back to my weightlifting. I end up skipping the practice the next day to go hit chest like a good bro, and that’s how it goes for a while.


Despite my waning commitment, I have a pretty good 4-game run scoring 15, 17, 21, then capping off the run with a 25-point career high, in the last week of February. We’re now 7-1 on the season, and I’m feeling pretty good about myself. JNATs coming up, and things aren’t looking good(for the team).

Despite my drastic improvement, our team got a lot worse. First off are star shooting guard refused to play with us after the shit show that was last year, and moved up to U21 to go play in the all-native where he would get all-star, and lead his team to the semi-finals, go figure.

Yeah, he was really fucking good, he would’ve definitely made the team BC U19 team if he didn’t roll his ankle before tryouts.

Also, our all-star center from last year can’t play because well he aged out, and are all-star forward from last year’s team despite moving back, just missed the deadline for registration.

Oh yeah, that all-star forward that moved away last year came back in early March.

He was able to join the high school team but wasn’t able to play with us in JNAT. Anyways that left me, and our all-star point guard, which meant we had a duo surrounded by not much.

We had 2 maybe 3 solid starters, no bench, a shit coach, and 2 very inconsistent all-stars yeah were fucked. Anyways it’s not JNAT yet, and we still have 2 more tournaments to talk about before the big dance.


The first of those 2 tournaments did not go well for me. It was a men’s tournament, and I got invited to play for my hometown.

In the first game, I get injured in the 3rd quarter(rolled ankle), which put me out for the rest of the tournament.

Now my injury history hasn’t been too bad up to this point. I have had some minor ankle issues, but nothing that would hamper my long-term performance (for now).

I sit out the rest of the tournament and rest up.

The next tournament, which was literally the weekend after this one, didn’t go well either.

So the first game we play this team that we’ve been dominating all season, we’re 2-0 against them, and our coach decides to start are bench as a big fuck you to the opposing coach.

Are bench goes off, and are backup point guard gets a crazy nutmeg on one of the other players. We’re talking mad shit, doing a bunch of 2K emotes, and eventually we decide to finish them off and put the starters in.

We also have are all star forward back as well for this game.

We start off strong. I’m clamping up their small forward, making him look like a little kid. We go on a 7-0 run that ends with me getting a crazy and one finish on their big man. We have all of the momentum, by this point.

And then are all star forward decides to go DMX mode and gets 2 fouls in the span of 2 minutes, so coach takes him out. It’s time for me to step up, and pick up the slack. Well, one problem.

The other team’s coach finally had the bright idea of building a wall in the paint, which basically nullified my effectiveness on offence. I was dared to become a jump shooter, so I shot, and promptly missed almost all of my jumpers.

This put all of the pressure on our star point guard to do a carry job, and he, well he couldn’t do it either. After a while are all-star forward gets put back in, he gets a bucket off of an offensive rebound which helps us get our offence rolling a bit more, then proceeds to get into a fucking fist fight with one of the other players.


The opposing coach was playing 4D chess that game. He knew our all-star forward was a hot head, so he decided to put someone out there just to bother him, talk shit to him, and hard foul him.

How did I know this, well he tried to do the same thing to me the last time we played, with the exact same player too, and it didn’t work because I just couldn’t take the other player seriously, he was trash man. He couldn’t shoot, dribble, or play defence without fouling.

He was basically like a white Patrick Beverly, just out there running around like a headless chicken. Anyways this time the plan worked, and it’s pretty much 2v5 out there for the rest of the game. We lose by 5, a couple of plays didn’t go our way in the fourth, and they just outplayed us.

So what do we do? Do we give them their respect, and shake their hands like men, or do we pull a 91 pistons and head straight to the locker room?

Well, we storm back to the locker room until our coach comes in, grabs us by our jerseys and tells us he’ll put us into the fucking ground if we don’t get our asses out there and show the other team some respect.

After one of the most emasculating post-game handshake lines of all time we head back to the locker room again, and get verbally annihilated by our coach.

Eventually, he calms down, we go get some food, and we play our next game.


We blow out the other team by 30, I have a solid 17-piece, and sit the rest of the second half to let the bench have their moment in the sun. So JNATs coming up, just kidding it got cancelled because of C19 and to be honest I didn’t mind as all I wanted to do at this time was lift weights.

Third Off-Season/Pandemic

Yes, after are already somewhat long season I didn’t want to play basketball, and instead wanted to focus on other interests at the time(gains brah). Now I did just have my best season, finally living up to my perceived potential, but to be honest, at the time I didn’t even really care.

I was feeling very burnt out after my third season, and just needed a break from the sport. So I went on my mini retirement from late March to early June, where all I did was lift, do a bit of cardio, and chill.

Eventually, June came around, and one of my buddies asked me if I wanted to go play pickup at the court, as one of the firefighters put a rim up(they were taken down at the start of the pandemic). I decided ah what the hell, and wanted to see how I’d play after a 4-month layoff.

I was still pretty good, just a little rusty in the skills department, with absolutely atrocious cardio. However, I was much more athletic. I was faster, stronger, and could jump much higher, almost being able to dunk.

After taking a nice long 4-month break, the sport felt fresh again. My enjoyment of the game was back, and I was playing pick-up 3-4 times per week now.

Eventually, I started practicing on my own again as well, just in case we had a season that year(which we didn’t).

My skills were seeming to get better much faster than before, as my jump shot, and handle were improving quicker than ever.

After one pick-up game one of my friends asked me to go up for a dunk, partly as a joke.


So I go up and almost get it. It hits the back of the rim, then bounces out. Me and my friend both look at each other in shock, as we both didn’t expect me to get so close. I try a couple more times, then stop once I get tired.

After that day I made it my goal to try and dunk at least a couple of times that summer. Now, this hoop isn’t 10 ft, I thought it was at the time, but looking back it was actually 9’9, so about 3 inches under a regulation rim.

Anyways motivated Jayden is back, running, jumping, and lifting almost every day now. For about a month that was all I did. I felt like I had returned to, and even surpassed my peak.

Eventually, I did it, and finally got my first dunk(on the 9’9 rim). It felt fucking awesome. I also caught my first alley-oop the day after as well which was great. Everything was going my way until boom, one day I just woke up and my knees were killing me.


All of the running, jumping, and lifting had finally caught up to me. My knees were fried. It wasn’t anything major, I think it was just Osgood-Schlatters or better known as jumpers knee.

It’s basically a form of tendonitis that originates in your patellar tendon. Anyways I didn’t know what the hell was going on all I knew that was when I tried to run, or jump I would experience a crap ton of pain in my knees. I just thought it was general soreness, and decided to push through it.

So the summer was coming to an end, and I was actually moving that summer, so if there was a season I would be playing on a totally different team. Which was fine by me.

I was really excited to move as my shitty hometown, was, well it was shitty and still is to this very day. So we end up moving across the province, and I am now an island boy. Not Vancouver island, but queen Charrolte, or Haida Gwaii as we natives call it.

My dad’s hometown. Oh yeah, my previous hometown was Lytton BC for those of you who are wondering. Anyways I’m now on a fringe contender, in the single A Northwest zone. Queen Charlotte has a pretty strong team, and oh yeah we don’t get a season this year.

Grade 11: The Lay-Off


So the seasons cancelled, and it’s grind time. Lift weights, play ball, eat, sleep. That’s literally all I did for the whole year, with periods of waning motivation, and breaks from basketball thrown in there occasionally.

I didn’t do much socializing this year, and mainly kept to myself, going out occasionally, but usually tried my best to keep a strict training, and eating regimen. I did enough school work to just get by and put most of my energy into weights, and basketball.

I didn’t play in any regulated, or “real” games, but I got really fucking good at basketball this year. My handle and jump shot were finally at a level where I could call them good.

My defence was also at a level where I could call myself a good defender, and my finishing was incredible. I also started dunking on 10 ft rims(real rims) this year, getting my vertical to around 32 inches.

Unfortunately, it wasn’t all good, as this is the year when my knees really became a problem, with me having to take constant breaks due to my knee pain just being too much to handle. The pain felt sharp, like someone shoving a knife into your knee every time you put pressure on it.

It felt like the more athletic I got the more injury prone I became. Along with my knee problems, I would also experience constant shin splints, shoulder issues, and I would have some absolutely brutal ankle rolls that put me in crutches for days.

I had the engine of a Ferrari with the brakes of a Honda Civic.


Anyways we’ll fast forward to mid-June. I finish grade 11, and stuff is slowly starting to open up again.

I’m playing more pick-up basketball, and the public gyms are open again.

I go to a couple of scrimmages, and try and get as much work in as I can before, I move, again.

Yeah, my family moved around quite a bit, as you’re about to see here. So we’re supposed to move back to Lytton until it burns down, yeah that actually happened, look it up.

So the town burns down, and we’re cooped up in a hotel for a couple of days.

Eventually, we end up in this homeless shelter, on this small reservation a couple of hours out of Vancouver. There’s a basketball court nearby, and the people had a few spare balls laying around, so I’m still in grind mode.

I’m running, hooping, and doing some clastenichs. Eventually, we get in touch with one of our relatives in Vancouver and get the go to, to stay at their house in Port Coquitlam for a while.

I’m hyped because I finally get to live in Vancouver, and we stay there for a bit.

I don’t play much basketball here. I found out there was a golds gym nearby, so I went to check it out. Now I’m a small-town kid, so when I stepped into golds for the first time, my small, townie mind was blown away.


This was the first time where I was like, fuck basketball, I just wanna lift. I felt like I was in heaven, the lighting was godly, my pump was fucking insane, and there were fit chicks in yoga pants as far as the eye could see. I had found my calling.

This was the first time I was seriously thinking about quitting. I knew that basketball was holding me back from reaching my natty potential, but I also really liked the ego boost it gave me.

Thoughts of quitting soon evaporated when we had to move again, and I ended up at another homeless shelter, except this one was at this old summer camp. It was run by these religious people who made really good food, and they had a full-length basketball court nearby, ripe for the taking.

Now I was technically homeless, but not like the poor kind, more like the government has to pay for my family’s food, and living expenses, or else they risk a lawsuit kind. So we got grocery vouchers, gas vouchers, and a monthly allowance because their railroad burned down our rental.

So we were living pretty good.

There was also a ma&pa style gym about a 15-minute drive out from the homeless shelter as well, so the gain train continues. With nothing to do that summer except lift and hoop, I lifted and hooped.


So I’m back into hooping mode full swing, while still being really into lifting. Not to toot my own horn here, but by this point, I’m really fucking good at basketball. Like even more so than the last time I said I was really fucking good at basketball.

I can shoot, drive, dribble, basically, do it all, while being able to clamp you up on the other end of the court whenever I felt like it.

I’m at my peak basketball-wise here, I have insane cardio, I can dunk with ease, and I’m probably a better overall athlete than the majority of the people reading this. However, I cannot sustain this peak performance as my knees just don’t allow it.

By this point, I can only play at full intensity 2 maybe 3 times per week. My knees are only getting worse, and I feel like I’m playing Russian Roulette with them every time I step onto a basketball court.

Senior Year: The Fall Off

Fast forward a little bit, and we are moving again. This time to Kamloops, where I will try out for the South Kam Titans, Kelly Olynecks high school team for those of you who were unaware.

The government has us set up in the Hampton inn, with 2 rooms. I have a bus pass, a gym membership, and restaurant vouchers I’m set. Now despite me living entirely off of fast food, restaurants, junk food, and high school cafeteria food, I’m the leanest I have ever been.

My TDEE was through the roof, I was going to the gym 6 days per week, playing pick-up basketball almost every day, going to high school practices, going to school, doing my own individual basketball workouts, and doing cardio on the side.

I could basically eat whatever the fuck I wanted and still had very defined visible abs. Anyways doing all of that shit for months on end tends to burn one out, which it did, especially you know when you live in a fucking hotel, and have the diet of one of those 600 lb life mother fuckers.

By November all of the hooping, and lifting, had finally caught up with me.

I felt like shit, I couldn’t focus in class, my basketball performance went to shit, and I just couldn’t do it.

So I took 2 whole days off of the gym, which at the time was unheard of for me.


Eventually, I got back into the swing of things with lifting, and school (in that order of course). Basketball wise I was totally done, and ready to hang up the cape. I just didn’t really enjoy it anymore. Even though ability-wise I was at the peak of my powers, mentally I was done.

All I wanted to do was lift, and just be a normal high school student for the first time in my life. But right before I’m about to tell the coach I’m gonna be hanging up the shoes a bit early turns out we’re moving, back to Queen Charlotte.

So I get there and right off the bat, I’m telling everyone I’m not going to play. I’m just here to lift weights, get my diploma, and then get the fuck out. I just wanted a nice, smooth ride to graduation. All I wanted to do was lift, party, and chill.


But then people started to talk. They started to butter me up, play at my ego, and eventually I was convinced to go make an appearance at one of the team practices. I only went up because I wanted to use the weight room, but then the coach calls my name and says he wants to speak to me.

He starts talking about how we can make a real run this year, and that I’m the missing piece to this team. I finally give in and say fuck it I’ll give it one last go. I do pretty well in the practice, I’m definitely not playing at the level I was previously at a couple of months ago(skill-wise), but I’m definitely the most athletic I’ve ever been.

I’m basically the epitome of what coaches have been saying about me my whole career by this point, a great athlete, but a bad basketball player. I’m still very well into weight lifting making it my main focus, skipping practices, and classes to go lift, eat, or sleep.

Even though I’m playing doesn’t mean I really care about the sport, I just want glory and recognition. Going into my first tournament, I’m thinking that my nonchalant, don’t give a fuck attitude will help me. Unfortunately for me, that mindset only works when you have the skills, and cardio to back it up.

So I’ve been playing pretty well in practices, and I have a reputation of being a really good basketball player already, somehow, yeah I don’t really know how that happened. I guess people just thought what they saw last year was what they’ll be getting this year x2 because logic I guess.


Anyways fast-forward to the day of the tournament, and I’m not ready. My skills are rusty, my cardio is fucking dog shit, and I’m just not mentally ready to compete.

So what do I do, I suit up and play of course. Even better I’m asked to start and to guard the other team’s best player.

Coach gives us a motivational speech, I’m using all of my energy, and knee durability dunking in the warm-ups, and we’re off!

I’m feeling a bunch of things, nervousness, pride, frustration, arrogance, basically every negative feeling in the book. I don’t want to be here, I don’t even know why I’m playing, but I want to show off and shit all over this fucking island.

Yeah, my mindset was all kinds of fucked, those are feelings that are great for weight lifting, and football, but basketball, no, you need a clear head to play well. Anyways the other team gets the jump ball, and we’re on D.

I get blown by and scored on, and coach makes an immediate switch and puts me on another player. Coach knows something is off about me and is now probably regretting starting me as well. Anyways we play the game as normal, and every time I get the ball I drive in, and barrel my way into the paint.

I’m getting pretty close to scoring on a lot of these drives but the ball either rolls out, narrowly misses, or just hits the wrong spot on the glass and just doesn’t go in. The finishings there, but for whatever reason, god was not looking on me fondly, and decided to fuck me over.

I finally get one to go, an get and-1 finish that probably should’ve been a charge. I miss the free throw, which means I’m 1 for 6 with 2 points so far. Eventually, coach decides he’s seen enough and takes me out at the start of the second quarter.

I tell him that I don’t know what’s going on and that I usually make all of these, and he just tells me that I got some work to do. Anyways I expect to get back in halfway through the second, or by the start of the third.

Nope, I get in late in the third for 2 minutes then taken out, and then I get put back in for the last 4 minutes of the 4th.

By this point, the game isn’t even competitive, as we’re blowing these guys out by 30.

I’m out there not even trying as anything I do during this time would be considered stat padding and wouldn’t even count, so I’m just standing around doing fuck all for the remainder of the game.

The Hadia people don’t take kindly to my “lack of competitive nature” so I’m getting quite a bit of backlash from the refs, other players, and opposing coaches for not showing enough “heart”.

The game ends and I’m absolutely livid. I only dropped 2 points, going back to my fucking rookie numbers.


I mean that’s a pretty big fucking drop-off going from averaging almost 20, to almost putting up a goose egg. I wanted to quit so badly, but there was no way I was ending my basketball career like that. I have to rectify this in my next game.

So I’m getting absolutely shit on at school, my underperformance was making waves, and I went to go lift to blow off some steam. I honestly didn’t know why I just didn’t quit there and then. I had every reason to.

Lifting had never felt more satisfying, and probably never will feel more satisfying than it did back then. I had nothing, I lost the confidence to play my sport at a high level, I had no close friends, I was doing badly in school, and I had no idea how I was going to get off of this fucking island shit hole.

I hated everything in my life except lifting, it was the only thing I cared about, and the only thing that brought me any good. Yeah so I was borderline suicidal, the only thing keeping me going was my training at that point, and I had to suit up and play in another fucking game.


So the game starts and my ass is glued to the bench. I eventually get in somewhere near the start of the second quarter. So I’ve been sitting for a while and I want to get some points, to get me into a good basketball flow.

I get the ball on the left wing and see my chance. A nice runway path to the rim with one average-sized guy in the way, it’s perfect. So I drive, and just barely miss. Coach proceeds to bench me, a minute after and gives me this whole spiel about how I’m selfish, and how I only look to score.

I mean well no shit mother fucker, that’s the whole point of the fucking game. The fucked up part is that everyone else on the team plays like this, so it’s like why are you singling me out asshole.

Anyways I proceed to sit the rest of the fucking game, and I’m just done. I go to the locker room get my shit and rush out of the building, I go home and I feel almost relieved.

Now is the perfect chance to quit, if there’s a time to leave it’s now. I gave it a shot and it clearly didn’t work out. So we have one more game, and we have a bi-day. I skip school and just fuck about the whole day debating whether or not I was going to play.

I eventually cave, after my dad says I should at least finish the tournament, and decide after that. I take his advice and decide to suit up.

He drops me off at the gym and the coach tells me to be ready.


I’m still questioning why I decided to play, and am in my head for the whole warm-up.

Eventually, the game starts and I’m on the bench. I get put in with the bench unit and get an alright amount of playing time.

I still don’t do good, I’m missing shots, and not playing the greatest defence, but my cardio is better, and I’m starting to build some chemistry with the other players.

I finish the game with 4 points, on pretty bad shooting splits, but the coach said I had potential and could be great if I just put in the work. He tried to play into my ego, but the whole potential, work, and great speech was getting a little old as I’ve had coaches tell me that my whole fucking life.

And you want to know what’s funny I did put in the work for like 4 fucking years, and well I’m not great yet, so what the fuck? Anyways he said if I started putting in more work he would play me more, and even make me a starter again.

From there I decided that I would play out the rest of my senior season, and give it a genuine shot. I would start putting in more work during my own time, and I would go out on a bang.

I went to more practices did a little bit more skill work on my own, and even did a very small, minuscule amount of cardio. I was slightly more motivated, and by the time our second tournament came around, I had gotten noticeably better.


It wasn’t a crazy amount of improvement, but my cardio was much better, and I was starting to find my footing within the system. I was having to take time off due to knee issues however and had to learn to start playing more conservatively.

Before our first game, the coach came up to me and told me to be ready like 50 times. By the time the game started, I was in my usual spot, on the bench, but I got in a bit earlier than before. I fuck up the first play by trying to sneak in an extra step on my lay-up attempt which gets caught by the ref.

I pass the bench and the coach tells me to get my shit together. I proceed to turn on my inner point god and get 6 assists in the first half, and for the first time in my career, I become a team player, calling plays, playing good defence, rebounding, and setting up the offence.

See I’ve always been good at passing I just never bothered to really use my court vision unless I absolutely had to. I ended the game with 5 points, and 8 assists, off the bench and found my new calling, as a point forward. I liked my new role, I was like ben simmons except I was an alright shooter.

I got a bit more playing time in my next few games, I dialled down my assists a little and started to drive more. I dropped 12 points and 5 assists, and 10 and 4 in our next 2 games. I wasn’t the main option anymore, but I was a solid backup PG that did a bit of everything.

So we’ve actually gotten pretty far in this tournament, and have now reached the semi-finals.

I’m dead tired by this point and don’t have much left to give. So I proceed to drop a goose egg in the next game while playing some really good defence.


No one questions why I dropped the fucking ball in this game as everyone’s hyped that we made it so far in the tournament. So we’re out for the break, and the seasons gonna be put on hold because the whole islands facing a pretty big Covid outbreak.

So I have nothing to do on an island in the middle of butt fuck nowhere that’s on lockdown, other than lifting weights, eating, and researching about lifting weights and eating.

Over the break, I really start to get into weight lifting as my progress is skyrocketing after I made some adjustments to my diet, and training. I come back to school almost 13 lbs heavier, and the most jacked I had ever been to that point.

I was very curious to see how this new muscle would affect my basketball, and spoiler alert it helped, ALOT! I was locking up everyone on defence, I was the strongest, and fastest I had ever been up to that point, and the extra strength made shooting, passing, dribbling, and finishing much easier.

I looked good and felt great. My ego was on overdrive, and I wanted to be one of the top scorers on the team now. I was done being the backup point guard, I wanted my starting spot back, and wanted to get back to averaging almost 20 per game.


I start training more basketball, I gain even more muscle and get stronger in the gym, and by the time the lockdown ends, I’m the most athletic I have ever been. I may not have been as skilled in some areas as I had been before, but my ball handling, defence and finishing were peaked.

I was 175 lbs of lean muscle and had the best physique I had up to that point. I’ve been killing it at our team practices, and I feel really good heading into this comeback game.

This is the first game of 2022 for us, and our last chance to get some in-game reps before we head off to zones(our playoffs). Now we’re projected to mop the floor with this team, they are supposed to be a bug on our shoe.

We start the game and it’s close. I’m still coming off the bench a little irked, but I shouldn’t be there for much longer. I even took pre-workout before this game, because why not.

Anyways I finally get into the game and the teams running a full-court press. They put me on the point guard and I get to work. I’m locking this guy up, not even letting him get up the court. We double-team him and he turns the ball over.

I clap in his face and say some not-so-nice words to him. Anyways a couple of possessions go by, and I have the ball with 4 seconds left on the clock. I sprint down the court with the ball and hit a buzzer-beating floater. I’m pumped and ready to absolutely rail the other team.


Coach gives a speech and I don’t listen to a single word. The pre-workout has kicked in, and I’m cracked out of my fucking mind.

He said some bull shit about playing hard, defence, why the fuck are we not up 20, and some other cliche stuff.

I ask him if I can stay in, and he says sure, and I’m starving for buckets at this point.

A couple of possessions go by, and I get a steal and run the break. There are 2 defenders in my way so I turn on the jets, and take flight. I get closed-lined in the face as I go up, still manage to get the layup and ask the ref why there was a no-call.

He shrugs his shoulders so I just run back to play defence. A couple of possessions go by, and I get pulled out. I think it’s for a quick breather but coach is pissed. He tells me I’m a selfish player and I ask him why. He says I’m not playing any help side on defence and am being a lazy defender.

And I say back, it’s not my fault these fuckers can’t guard their man. That was the beginning of the end of my basketball career. Coach proceeded to bench me almost the whole game, only putting me in for a couple of minutes during garbage time.

He was clearly trying to send a message even though taking me out of the game was not the smart play for this game, or for the long-term success of his team.

His taking me for granted here, while his team was still fairly deep didn’t seem like too bad of an idea now, but as the season went on and are roster got thinned out it would come back to bite him in the ass. So I’m pissed, and the coach has the audacity to tell me to come to a post-game practice.

I skip it of course, which should almost be expected after the bull shit he pulled, during that game but I still show up for the next Monday practice.


Tensions are high. The coach says I got to put in some work before zones, I just nod my head and go put on my shoes. The next few practices go well, until Wednesday. At that practice, we were having a scrimmage, and I looked like and felt like shit.

I had to go spill my guts into the toilet a couple of times during the middle of the game. I was coughing up a storm, and I was deathly pale. My coach asked if I felt all right I told him I think I have a cold. When my dad picked me up he told me I looked like shit.

I told him I puked a couple of times during practice, but I should be good to play this weekend, and he said I have to take a covid test before I go. So I take the test and boom I have Covid, and most likely gave it to the whole team.

So I send a picture of my covid test to the team group chat, and the teams in panic mode. Fast forward a bit, and my covid clears up. I’m cleared to go back to school and play ball, problem is I lost a lot of weight, and even worse a lot of gains while I was sick.

JNATs coming up in like a week to, which is not good since even if I do play how good will I be, after 2 weeks of Covid?

The answer to that question was I’m still pretty good and can probably still contribute, but I’ve definitely regressed in a lot of areas other than speed.

I think all the weight I lost over the 2 weeks made me quicker, however at the cost of all of my other attributes.

But by this point, I was totally done with basketball, I still felt like shit from Covid, I was skipping practices to let myself recover, and I need to get back my gains.


Also, I have a shit ton of school work to catch up on as well, you know because I didn’t go for almost 2 weeks. My back is against the wall at this point, I mean I’m at risk of flunking the 2nd term of grade 12, I just lost 2 months of progress in the gym, and due to our roster being thinned out due to JNAT rules, the team actually needs me.

So I‘m now at a crossroads. Either quit basketball, wait about a month to start making fitness progress again, and play catch up for the rest of the year, or drop out of high school.

Now for obvious reasons that last option, isn’t an option, so I really only have 2 choices. And I had about just over a week to make up my mind. I stopped going to practices, stopped responding to teammates’ and coaches’ text messages, and skipped a day of school to funny enough catch up on schoolwork.

By the time Friday came around I had made up my mind. It was time to officially hang up the shoes, for real this time. I mean I would still play every now and then for fun, but competitive basketball just wasn’t for me anymore.

I told my parents that I wouldn’t be going to JNAT anymore, and they were happy because they wouldn’t have to take out a house loan to pay for my food. Saturday I texted my coach, and team, and told them that I’m hanging it up and that I won’t be playing with them anymore.


About an hour or 2 later my phone begins to blow up like crazy. Teammates, coaches, friends, and other basketball players within the community are trying to get me to see “reason”. So I just put my phone on silent and muted my notifications for the next few days.

Lifting had fully taken me over, and I was totally ok with it. I had a lot of regaining to do, so I just got to lifting and training. I turned my notifications back on later that same week after they had left for JNAT just to read some of the messages.

They were texting me all the way up until they left on the bus. These guys were desperate, and their desperation was warranted after their lack of depth got exposed in the tournament.

I remember a little after they got back from JNAT, I asked them how it went and they told me that the coach had a mental breakdown during one of the half times screaming where the fuck is Jayden, where the fuck is Jayden.

I couldn’t help but laugh and then told them sorry for fucking up your guy’s title chances. I also got a text from the coach that ended up just being a ploy to try and get me to play in the All-Native. I didn’t bother responding and just went on with my life.

Do I Regret Quitting Basketball?


Ok, the big question do I regret quitting when I did? Hell no. It was the best possible choice I could’ve made at the time. To be honest I regret not quitting sooner. I loved basketball, and still enjoy it to this day, but it has simply been replaced by lifting.

If I could go back in time to convince my past self to not to play at all during my senior year I would because I would probably be more jacked for it. I do miss the sport every now and then thinking about what could’ve been, but I try not to get too caught up in it.

All in all, I do not regret my time playing basketball. I had tons of fun, made lots of memories, and it’s the reason I got into fitness in the first place.



Jesus fucking christ. Alright, I just smashed my previous word record by 4500, for a total of 14,864 words. If you can leave a like that would be greatly appreciated. I don’t know why I do these big long-form posts, other than because I enjoy it.

Anyways if you’d like to read similar content check out the latest from the blog, and with that, I’ll catch you in the next one. Peace!

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