Developmental League, Competitive Players

Developmental League, Competitive Players

Matthew Hartman

Our winter basketball league is around the corner and we have 100+ teams signed up thanks to all of the convos between so many local families. Many of these discussions were about which league to join.

We Not Me - Havertown Hoops (or other Rec leagues) - Malvern league

All good choices. Here are a few distinctions. 

1) Price

  • WNM: $129 per player
  • HH: $120 per player
  • Malv: $140 for a¬†10-person team

2) Team formation

  • WNM: Parents/coaches organize teams of classmates
  • HH: Get drafted on a team with random players
  • Malv: Parents/coaches can form a team of anyone in the same grade¬†

3) Competition

  • WNM: Developmental League where players are encouraged to compete on every possession
  • HH: League for Beginners
  • Malv: Competitive League with players of every skill level

4) Scheduling

  • WNM: First the coaches fill out a survey estimating their team's skill level. Then only the first few games are scheduled. After those results come in and¬†all of the¬†coach's feedback, the next 7 games are scheduled. We aim to have each game be the right kind of challenge.
  • HH: So much of what guides them is trying to make a league that is fair and balanced. They do an excellent job of this starting with the draft.
  • Malv: Randomly assigned matches. No changes.¬†

I get it. I'm competitive too. 

My friends haven't called me back since our last pickleball match. There's a level of... intensity that's apparently not welcome at our park.

Noted :)

I want to win so darn bad when I play... anything. But, I'm 39 years old and it's appropriate to be this competitive. 

(Hold on a sec, my wife has a few objections!)

We Not Me, like Mission 5&2 before it, is a developmental league where the players are encouraged to compete on every possession. The goal of each possession should either be to Score or get a Stop. 

The difference between a developmental and a competitive league is how the coaches and parents behave.

We discourage the coach from playing their best 5 players all game. We discourage a coach from having their best player take every shot. We discourage parents from cheering against other kids. We discourage parents from thinking winning is the only acceptable outcome. 

But, we absolutely encourage coaches to encourage hustle, tenacity, and competitiveness. Then we follow that up with sportsmanship, humility, and teamwork.

We absolutely encourage parents to cheer for their own child and their teammates. Then we follow that up with a reminder: "You love them just because."

Our refs in grades 1-3 will sometimes stop the game to explain a rule. I used to love doing this when I was a ref for Mission 5&2. What better way to help someone learn than immediate feedback?! Then we keep it moving. There's a lot of basketball to be played :)

I see this league as the best way to prepare these young players for more competitive leagues like CYO or High School and beyond. If your team is new and a little nervous I will try my best to match you up with similar teams. If your team is chomping at the bit for more then you aren't alone. We'll find you a similar foe just as well.

Nobody wins in a blowout.





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