Calipari discusses becoming mentally tough

What does it take for a team to become mentally tough? Coach Calipari has the answer.

John Calipari was asked about developing mental toughness during his press conference on Tuesday.

The Kentucky coach replied, "You build that through how you practice, how much time you spend, and then demonstration and performance on the court. You build that.

"If you don't work real hard, and you don't spend the extra time, and you don't come in here and fight and absolutely devour practices, you'll get in the game and it will get real hard. You don't want any part of that roughness. If you do that in practice it's a habit you'll do it in the game.

"The second part of it is you know something good is going to happen because of how much time you've spent. The guys that I've coached that have spent the most time with this game have benefitted the most by and large. It doesn't always mean they become the MVP of the NBA, even though Derrick Rose worked harder than any player I've ever coached and I'm talking about extra time, spending more than he needed to spend. Those guys that work hard and really spend time benefit when they leave and get out of basketball. They understand that in anything, ‘if I really work, I can become good at it.'

"I've had a bunch of them. Lou Roe was a killer when I was at UMass; so was Harper Williams. I mean those guys were absolute warriors. It started in years of practice. The last twenty minutes of every practice those two dominated. (Former Memphis Tiger) Joey Dorsey had that mental toughness. He couldn't make a free throw, but it didn't matter. He'd come up with a block, a defensive stop or something late that would help us win. He had a mental toughness to him. The guys that finish those last twenty minutes of practice usually are those guys."


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