I assumed Walton would leave plenty of verbal sticky-notes of inspiration on Hibbert's game to go with the raw, technical instruction, but this is ridiculous. Bruno's Caught in the Web captures the day and reveals a quote-filled cornucopia of Walton hyperbole that should have Big Roy ready to run through a brick wall by the end of the week.
Here's a mere sampling of Walton's description of his expectations for Hibbert:
"He has to control the paint. It's not his choice, it's his responsibility, it's his duty, it's his obligation. He has to learn how to do that on an individual basis. He has to learn how to do that on a team basis. It's a matter of how hard he's willing to work not just physically but mentally, as well, and to train his mind so that in the heat of battle he can make the correct decisions that are going to allow him to become a great champion and return the Pacers to their rightful place among the hierarchy of the NBA."
Seriously, that's just a sampling. Read the whole thing because there are better quotes that will simply make you laugh out loud...in a good way. For me, the timing on this was perfect. Let me explain after the jump.
After reading this True Hoop post today, I enjoyed the same feelings I'm sure Henry felt when he wrote it, and the same feelings he was hoping to, well...inspire in his readers. I share Henry's belief-in-the-greater-good way of going through life. The post on Magic's ability to lead by inspiring the best out of people (even in High School!) affirmed the way I try to treat the people I manage at the day job.
Then I read the report from the Fieldhouse and see the "inspire the best" philosophy in practice. In Walton, I see the perfect mentor for Roy Hibbert who has shown a craving to max out his winnings from the "genetic lottery," as Walton put it. Hibbert is bright and coachable, but also emotional. He gets excited. Likes to joke around. Knows when he's screwed up.
Now he has Walton as a mentor who appears hell-bent on inspiring Hibbert to heights he has yet to consider. This should be a fun storyline to follow.