CASEY ARCHIBALD

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Welcome to Estonia

Posted by caseyarchibald on August 29, 2010 at 7:41 AM Comments comments (47)

Here I am on the team bus returning from training camp.  Yup. Another season has come.  Withthat is the usual anticipation and excitement that the next 10 monthshold.  With every new team come manyunknowns.  Will the coach speak English,what my apartment will be like, how will my teammates be, what will be my roleon the court, how will the city be... The list goes on.  As this is my 4th season overseasI now take these unknowns head first and am more so looking forward to them thanworrying about what the future holds.  Istill remember  before leaving for myfirst season in Austria I was having my going away party and I was filled witha sense of anxiety as not only had I never been to  Europe but I have never even seen a Europeangame before.  And I was going to go liveon my own in this strange country for the next 10 months and play ball for aEuropean team?  Well now I know what toexpect and how the whole business of this game works.  I have also learned to adapt to all sorts ofdifferent situations and feel comfortable in most.  One thing that I have learned in these past 4years is how to enjoy things that I would have once seen as strange oruncomfortable and I try to make myself feel at home wherever I may be.

 

With that said I have officially been here for a week andmany of these unknowns have been resolved and I am comfortable saying that thisyear has the possibility to be a great year. I never want to get ahead of myself or come to any conclusions before Iknow more but after a week of running, lifting and practices (yes, in thatorder) I believe we have a good group and if we can stay together, play foreach other, stay healthy and stay positive then we could all have a successfulyear, and along with that a few laughs and an enjoyable ride.

 

I am now heading back to Tallinn for a day and a half off(yes I’ve also learned to count half days as most of my days are split into 2or 3 workouts) and then starting next week with our first preseason gameagainst a traveling team of free agents from Oklahoma.  I’m looking forward to getting back out thereand seeing what we are working with. Stay fresh stay positive.

 


National Team

Posted by caseyarchibald on July 15, 2010 at 10:14 PM Comments comments (0)

I am Currently sitting in a Hotel downtown Toronto.  I have been here for 6 nights training with the Canadian National Development team.  It's been a week or playing, eating, sleeping, playing eating sleeping.  We have been going hard twice a day, for about 2-3 hours each session.  I remember when I first started doing these back when I was right out of High School and in my first few years of College.  The biggest challenge then was just surviving the 2 a days.  Since then my body and mind has really developed and I am actually able to concentrate on getting better and learning new things at these camps.  Of course it's still important to take care of the body, but with enough experience in the bag, and coming into camp expecting 6 hours of training a day, it's not such a struggle.  I have noticed some of the younger guys really struggling with the physical aspect of surviving these days, as well as mentally getting quite fatigued and losing concentration.  I have tried to help them out and share any type of wisdom I have to help them grind it out.


The Team has brought in a former Euroleague Final 4 coach name Renato Pasquali.  He has been running most of the camp and I must say I have learned a lot from him.  He has a much different style of coaching than most of the coaches that I have played for but his basketball knowledge speaks for itself.  He really does get a lot out of guys and demands everyones full attention and effort. 


We head off tomorrow for a 2.5 week tour of europe.  It will be a very busy trip as we are playing 6 games in 7 days in 3 countries, all of which will be against Senior National teams, including Spain and Great Britain.  It will be a great test of endurance and a good test for a lot of the younger guys who haven't had a chance to play much international ball.


Anyways, this is where I shut it down, say my thanks for getting through another tough day healthy and get ready for a good practice in the  morning and a safe trip to Belgium.

Summer League'ing

Posted by caseyarchibald on June 24, 2010 at 3:11 AM Comments comments (0)

So I am now back in the city I call my home, Vancouver.   As usual after the season I took a littlebreak to let the body heal and mind wonder away from the game.  This year most of my break was spent inEurope so when I got back to Vancouver it was time to get back totraining.  My break was a bit shorterthis summer as I am preparing to make the Canadian National Team this summer. 


When I first landed back in Canada I was asked by a semi-proteam which plays in the IBL to play the remainder of the season with them.  Fortunately this season ends just before mytryouts so it’s a great way for me to get some good runs in and stay inshape.  The team has been playing well asof late and in my first 2 games we blew out a team from Oregon and a team fromTacoma, Washington.  With a lack of pointguards on the team I slid over to the 1 and played nearly the whole game.   In my first game I ended with the firsttriple double in the team’s history ending the game with 25 pts, 17 assts, and12 rebounds.  It was nice to get backinto the game and the team we have here is quite talented.  With just 2 regular season games left I’mhoping to keep this 8 game win streak going into the playoffs and keep getting better.

 

 


Blackjack

Posted by caseyarchibald on May 20, 2010 at 12:28 PM Comments comments (0)

Off season for basketball players is a tricky business.  It’s something like playing Blackjack.  If you sign too early you may miss the chanceof getting that card that you need to get the perfect hand, although if youkeep playing hoping for that one card you might bust before you find it.  It’s also similar in the fact that you willhave people in both your ears telling you to go one way or the other.  But when it comes down to it, it’s your cardsand you need to play them as best as you see fit.


I’m currently writing this into my Blackberry in theDusseldorf airport on a layover en route to Alicante, Spain.  I spent the last week in a small town inEstonia called Rakveere visiting a good friend and old teammate who I playedwith in Austria.  When I booked the tripI was thinking I would have a little vacation after my season and see anotherpart of the world that I had no idea about. I turned out to be a bit different. Richard’s team ended up making the finals of the league and somehow Iended up practicing with them while I was there.  It turned out to be a lot of fun as it was agreat group of guys and everyone was really nice.


As of now this looks like it will be the first card playedas the coach liked what he saw and with the possibility that they may play inthe Eurocup next season he is quite interested in bringing me in.


In other news I have been invited for a National Team tryoutthis summer which I am all geeked up  forand look forward to training and getting ready for.  I haven’t been in the mix for a few years soit’s a great opportunity.


Now I am just praying that I make it to Spain with all mybags and without getting ripped off by any more people like what just happenedto me in Riga, Latvia.  But that’sanother story!

 


Reflections

Posted by caseyarchibald on April 30, 2010 at 6:11 AM Comments comments (0)


As I write this I am sitting in a beautiful apartment over looking a neighbourhood in Berlin.  I have just finished my 3rd season in Europe and like all ends to seasons it's time to look back and reflect on what has transpired in the last 8 months.  Although this season was very difficult from a basketball standpoint I am still very thankful.  Unfortunately the market was very tough this year and many players didn't even get the opportunity to cross the Atlantic so for that I am very thankful.  It is important for me to realize what this game has done for me.  Aside from the wins and losses which takes my emotions on a constant roller coaster, this game has given me the chance to meet some great people, see places that I would never see (where I sit as I write this) and do things that would otherwise be nearly impossible with a 9-5.  So with that said when things get tough, or seasons don't go as expected I constantly remind myself just how lucky I am, appreciate the people who have helped me get here and then go out and work harder and harder.


 

This season I experienced more losses than multiple seasons combined.  I was brought in to replace and American who to the teams belief just wasn't getting the job done.  I didn't get a chance to see him play so I have no idea.  When I came in there were 2 other Americans, and 2 other Canadians.  Within 3 weeks of me being here both Canadians were gone (one by personal choice the other by teams choice).  We were now down to myself and 2 Americans along with the local Germans.  With one game left before Christmas we came to practice like any normal day to find out that they had fired our American PG and would be bringing in a new one for the game that weekend.  Total count of players released before Christmas- 4.  I had been injured for a few weeks and knew of a player who was looking for a job so I recommended them bringing him in to help us out while I was injured.  He played 4 games and was released as soon as I got back into the swing of things.... 5... Then they fired our coach.  Then our American 4 man hurt his knee... 6... Then they brought in a new American 3 but released him after a few games... 7..  You get the idea.


 

All in all it was a tough year.  We had no stability within the team, and at one point we were forced to take a pay cut as the team had hit some financial problems.  Needless to say it wasn't a stable environment for the players or the management.  After a year like this I remind myself to keep working hard, and keep getting better, and the rest will take care of itself.  I had been lucky to have a great 2 years in a stable environment before this and I know with my work ethic I will get back to a similar situation.


 

until next time... peace

 


Blog 2- Addictions

Posted by caseyarchibald on April 18, 2010 at 12:04 PM Comments comments (1)

“Man I tried to stop man, I tried the best I could”...  Kanye West, “Addiction”


Are our addictionsa bad thing?  Is doing somethingrepeatedly to the point that your daily thoughts always revert back to thisactivity a bad thing?  Or are addictionsneeded to master something?


Although the word addiction has a negative vibe to it Ibelieve that the majority of athletes will tell you that they have an addictivepersonality.  After reading and listeningto all the journalist report on the Tiger Woods incident it made me think ofall the problems that athletes find themselves in off the court.  Sure you can blame the media for putting alltheir lives under a microscope, but in reality these actions are probablycaused by the same character flaw that has made these athletes so great. 


I learned at a young age that I needed to be careful withwhat I got myself into.  I found thatonce I started doing something I would continue doing it all out untilsomething in my life changed that made me stop. A simple slap on the hand never seemed to really do the trick.  I’m talking about a full out INCIDENT wasneeded to make me change my ways. Fortunately enough for me, I wasn’t in the media spotlight when Ilearned some lifelong lessons.   


With this said, this characteristic is what I believe has allowed me to get to where I am in terms of basketball.  It made me want success in the game, andcrave working towards it.  It became aneveryday habit of working towards a greater goal, and a constant internalpressure to keep improving.... to keep playing... to keep working.


There are a ton of examples of athletes at their top oftheir game being caught up in something that stems from addictivebehaviour.  From Len Bias (the 2ndround pick in the 1986 NBA draft who overdosed on cocaine the night after beingdrafted), to Michael Jordan’s gambling, to most recently Tiger Woods sexualaddiction, it is evident that these great athletes have something in commonbesides great talents.  They have acharacteristic trait that if not controlled can lead to their demise. 


I had a few defining moments at a young age where I wasawakened to my addictive personality and looking back it is clear that thispersonality trait has really sculpted my life.  I did some things that when I look back on seem childish and definitelydon’t fit into the spectrum in which I try to live by now.  The same character flaw that got me deep intothese actions also allowed me to move on to completely new ways and live mylife in a much more respectful, healthy way. You live, and you learn, and hopefully you learn quick enough to livethe right way.

 


Blog1- The Beginning

Posted by caseyarchibald on April 5, 2010 at 10:52 AM Comments comments (0)

Hey everyone,


Well this is my 3rd year of playing basketball overseas and I have finally decided to blog. When I first left the homeland 3 years ago my father recommended that I started a blog, if it wasn’t to express myself at least it would be for my family to know the goings on of my new life. As you can see I wasn’t exactly thrilled with the idea and decided not to take part.  In those times I have read a lot of different blogs, from fellow athletes, to CEO’s to just random bloggers, and I guess I have officially read enough entertaining ones that I thought I would start writing myself.


Without boring you too much I will give a quick re-cap ofthe last 3 years.  After I graduated from UBC (best 5 years of my life) I was offered a job in Austria to play for then Kraftwerk Wels Basket club (now Raiffiessen Wels).  My first year was a HUGE adjustment to say the least.  Ball was different, food was different, the people were different, heck everything from the toilets to the speed limits were different.  I had another Canadian on the team, Rich Anderson, so that was a good buffer although that year went by extremely slow.  We finished middle of the pack and I had a decent rookie season, solid, not amazing.


I ended up signing back with Wels in my 2nd season.  This was a really fun year as we had a great group of guys and really gelled as a team.  I was having a good year up until right after the Cup.  I was averaging close to 17 ppg and helped us get to the Final of the Austrian Cup.  Missing 2 key players the whole way we ran out of gas and weren’t able to pull it off. Shortly after this I suffered an overuse injury in my foot and needed 3 months rest.  I came back in the semi-finals of the playoffs and helped where I could.  We ended up playing our biggest rivals,Gmuden Swans (then Euro-cup team).  This was a heated series with both the fans and the players knowing each other far too well.  I was able to contribute about 20 minutes a game (keep in mind I was out for 3 months) in this series and help Wels claim its first ever championship in over 50 years as a club. It was a great experience for not only us players but the coaching staff, management and of course the amazing fans.


After 2 years in Wels, I felt I needed a change, and with a few other players leaving the team we decided it wasn’t going to work out going back for a 3rd year.  I was looking forward to a new challenge as part of the experience is seeing other countries, playing for different coaches and experiencing different cultures.


After a tough summer of training I landed in Pro A Germany,for a team called Nordlingen Giants.  It has been a very tough year as the team had some financial problems as well as problems winning!!!! I have been here for 7 months and in this time I have seen 8 different Americans come and go, and 1 coach as well.  Needless to say it’s been hard to gel as a team and our record shows it.  We have 3 games left where hopefully we can restore some pride in the teams name, and then it will be time to move on to other things.


Well this being my first blog I will end it here with a quote that will get me through another long week of practice.


“Failure and rejection can be the best motivators and sources of learning. Setbacks should make you more determined to improve.”

 

 



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