WINSTON-SALEM, N.C — It happens to every athlete at some point — things just aren’t going your way, and you clearly don’t have your “A” game working.
For some, that’s devastating, but others adapt and take what’s given to them.
That’s what 2018 Greensboro Day (NC) shooting guard John Newman did earlier this month during an “off” game in pool play of the CP3 Live AAU event in Winston-Salem.
His shot wasn’t falling, so he instead made an impact on the boards and at the basket, eventually hitting the go-ahead ‘and-1’ in the late stages to give his CP3 U16 squad a win en route to a 6-0 record in the tourney.
“Today was one of my off games. My shot wasn’t falling, and I realized that so I had to affect the game in other ways,” Newman told Demon Deacon Digest after the game. “Usually I work the mid-range and shoot some 3s, but I had to find other ways today. I just tried to step up. It’s high-level competition, and we were out of sync early. I just wanted to help my team win.
“We were down with three minutes to go. I can’t let my team lose.”
Newman said he’s added offers from Wake Forest, Cincinnati and James Madison during the summer.
“Coach Manning and Ballard are the two coaches recruiting me the most from Wake Forest,” he said. “They say I could come to Wake because I can make an immediate impact.”
Newman plans to continue working on his game as he gets ready to start his junior season under Greensboro Day head coach Fred Johnson.
“I can make the open shot, and I can make it contested, but getting it off is tough if my confidence isn’t there,” he said. “I want to work on my 3-point shot, and making it more consistent. The more consistent you get, the more confidence you get in taking the shot.”
Newman made several clutch free throws down the stretch of the game in pool play to secure the win.
“You have to shoot the ball the right way, but it’s more about getting those reps in over and over and over,” he said about foul shooting. “The muscle memory and getting in the habit of shooting it the right way.”
It’s still early in the process, but the Deacs have left a favorable impression on Newman thus far.
“I’m really interested in Wake Forest,” he said. “They have a great program, and I think very highly of Wake.”