The UA Next Combine Series Powered by Jr. NBA on Saturday attracted 26 male and 25 female players from around the province. (Gary Ahuja/Langley Events Centre)

NBA star part of special basketball clinic at Langley Events Centre

The best U14 players from around the province gathered Saturday for the training.

A new basketball camp Saturday at the Langley Events Centre gave U14 boys and girls from around the province an up-close-and-personal session with an NBA star.

Stay grounded, stay humble and keep working – Those were among the words of advice from Justin Jackson.

Jackson, an NBA 2018 second-round draft pick of the Denver Nuggets subsequently traded to the Orlando Magic, was speaking at the UA Next Combine Series Powered by Jr. NBA on Sunday afternoon at Langley Events Centre. He was joined by former WNBA player Stacey Lovelace.

“It has been great. We learned a lot,” said Langley’s Trevor Duffin. “When we were talking to Justin [Jackson] and Stacey [Lovelace], it was really good for the mental aspect of the game. It really gets you thinking.”

The assembled teens – 26 male and 25 female – were at the event by invitational only, selected to showcase their skill set, and learn what it will take to succeed in the next chapters of their respective basketball journeys.

“There are a lot of talented kids out here and I am seeing them do a lot of advanced things, making the right reads and the right moves, and things like that, so it shows there is a lot of special talent here and with that talent, you just have to keep working hard,” Jackson said.

“Talent can only bring you so far, but it is hard work and work ethic which brings you to another level.”

The event featured the same state-of-the art circuit used during the NBA draft and the invitees went through an interactive combine experience, using digital extensions alongside skill instruction from clinicians designed to help them excel at the high school level.

There were also scrimmages and an opportunity to pose with the Larry O’Brien Trophy, the grand prize in the NBA, as well as a Q and A session with Jackson and Lovelace.

“Do what you do best and what you are good at and the right people will notice,” Jackson said. “That is something I have lived by from the beginning of my career.”

Jackson, who is from Toronto and was drafted after two seasons with the University of Maryland, said players need to keep steady and never place too much importance on one game or event.

“I just try and treat everything the same, like I am on the playground playing with my friends and stuff like that. I try not to put anything too high on a pedestal. You got noticed and invited here for a reason and whatever you did [to earn that], just keep doing that,” he said.

Lovelace, who had a seven-year WNBA career after playing at Purdue University, said players need to treat practice like they would studying for an exam.

“Embrace practice. If you put effort into your preparation, you will go in (to a game) feeling much more confident,” she said.

Some of the teens admitted to nerves when the event began late Sunday morning, but by the end there were plenty of smiles.

“This was a good experience,” added Chilliwack’s Julia Tuchscherer. “It has all been pretty cool.”

This marks the second year of the combine, but this was the first time it was held in B.C. Following this event, it will make stops in Toronto and Montreal.

 

The UA Next Combine Series Powered by Jr. NBA on Saturday attracted 26 male and 25 female players from around the province. (Gary Ahuja/Langley Events Centre)

The UA Next Combine Series Powered by Jr. NBA on Saturday attracted 26 male and 25 female players from around the province. (Gary Ahuja/Langley Events Centre)

Just Posted

Giants serve up major defeat to Pats at Langley Events Centre

On the ice, Vancouver G-Men wrap up home stand with a 10-4 win over Regina Friday night.

A GoFundMe for the goats

Matthew Farden surpassed his fundraising goal for Aldergrove’s Happy Herd Farm rescue animals.

Langley Township’s Froese named vice-chair of Mayors’ Council

The Township mayor will be one of the top officials overseeing TransLink.

Holiday market for a mission

The Aldergrove HANDS mission team is hosting a holiday market to raise money for Belize.

Langley looks to match farmers with landowners

A workshop on Saturday is aimed at bringing the two parties together in a mutually beneficial way.

Winter weather hits parts of Canada

As some parts of the country brace for cold, parts of B.C. remain warmer than 10 C

Canada’s health system commendable overall but barriers to care remain: UN

The United Nations says Canada’s health care system is “commendable” overall but vulnerable groups still face barriers to quality care.

Unique technology gives children with special needs more independent play

UVic’s CanAssist refined seven prototypes aided by $1.5M government contribution

Kelly Ellard’s boyfriend has statutory release revoked

Darwin Duane Dorozan had several parole infractions that found him ‘unmanageable’

New chair of Metro Vancouver board is Burnaby councillor

The 40-person board is made up of elected officials from 21 cities and one First Nation

Doctor’s note shouldn’t be required to prove you’re sick: poll

70% of Canadians oppose allowing employers to make you get a sick note

German-born B.C. man warns against a ‘yes’ vote on proportional representation

Agassiz realtor Freddy Marks says PR in his home country shows party elites can never be voted out

Fashion Fridays: 5 coats you need this winter!

Kim XO, lets you know the best online shopping tips during Fashion Fridays on the Black Press Media Network

Saskatchewan college honours memory of Humboldt Broncos coach

Darcy Haugan wore jersey No. 22 when he was a star player with the Briercrest College Clippers

Most Read