Team Sports: The Collective Belief

Photo credit: Jeff Cable/USAWP

Photo credit: Jeff Cable/USAWP

Adam Krikorian, the U.S. water polo coach, was awarded this year’s Jack Kelly Fair Play Award, for demonstrating “composure, crediting his players for showing resolve and making the best of a difficult situation.”

‘The difficult situation’ was a mistake made by the coach, which put in jeopardy the women’s water polo team’s chances of winning gold in the Olympic games.  But that ‘mistake’ proved to be a challenge that ignited camaraderie, will, and a strong collective belief that they were in it together to win it.

“He instilled a new culture.  He said, over and again, we are all in this together.

He also made it plain the moment would come — he didn’t know when — when the players had so bought into the idea of playing not just with but for each other as well as the staff, the coaches and the United States of America that they would know, they would just know, what to do and how to do it.  That, he made clear, was what a team was about.”

Therefore,  can any team of great players succeed without chemistry? And if chemistry is such a an important factor, shouldn’t cultivating such a rapport be given more importance in order to better a team’s chance at achieving greatness?

- M. Bruce

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