Every basketball player has his doubters. Whether it’s a coach, fan, or rival player, someone has told them that their dreams are too big or impossible. But those words don’t make the game’s best give up–they only make them work harder. Those haters are fuel to the fire. Don’t believe us? Here’s how some of basketball’s brightest young stars have Conquered Their Can’t. Shout out to our friends at STACK.com for the great videos.
Elgin Cook, SF
“People are always going to have something to say about you, whether you’re doing good or you’re doing bad.”
Reggie Jackson, Detroit PG
“I remember being told in second grade that I couldn’t make it to the NBA and I needed a Plan B. I said that I don’t make Plan Bs.”
Kyle Collinsworth, Dallas PG
“About two years ago, I tore my ACL, and a lot of people said I couldn’t come back. But I put my head down, I went to work, and actually made it back in 6 months.”
Karl Anthony Towns, Minnesota C
“I had a coach who said that two of my teammates were going to be the best players to ever come out of our program and the only ones to succeed and I took that as motivation to prove him wrong.”
Skal Labissiere, Sacramento PF
“People are going to say whatever they’re going to say, but I’m just going to keep working hard, and one day it’s going to pay off.”
Paul George, Indiana SF
“I was told I wouldn’t be in the position I am now. I wouldn’t be an All-Star, wouldn’t even make it to the league. That’s pretty much what my career has been based off of.”
Erin Boley, Notre Dame F
“I had people tell me ‘You’re just not good enough,’ and that really pushed me to keep working hard because I know what I’m capable of.”
Keifer Sykes, PG
“My whole life, people told me I was too small. Too small to play high school basketball, too small to play varsity basketball. They told me I couldn’t finish at the basket. They told me I couldn’t shoot. They told me I wasn’t strong enough to defend. I’ve heard it all.
“They told me I couldn’t play at the Division I level, couldn’t play at the mid-major, couldn’t play high-major, and that I would have to go JUCO. A lot of people told me that I would have to go D-2. I remember in grade school one of my teachers told me that I was too big-headed because I told them that I was going to be a pro one day.
“Growing up, as far as basketball is concerned, I’ve heard all of the things that I can’t do but I really don’t worry about other people. None of that affects me. You have to worry about yourself–just put your head down and work each and every day, when people are watching and when they aren’t watching.
“When those opportunities come, you just have to be ready to perform, and that’s what I’ve been able to do all of my life.”
So now that you’ve heard from some of the game’s best players, tell us in the comments about your own #SayICant story and how you have overcome or are planning on overcoming it.