This week’s blog by PPI-CY is written by Fellow Sean Wright about his recent trip back home to the USA for an weekend with family and friends.
My dad taught me the beautiful game of basketball and all the joys that this game could bring you throughout your life if you played the right way. He instilled the values that I live my life according to, and many of those came from when he was coaching me. Sadly, he passed away in December on 2003, so whenever I step out onto a court or dribble a ball, I think of him and everything he has taught me.
This past weekend, I had the pleasure of coming back to the USA for a basketball tournament held at Boston University where my father was a standout basketball player. This was no ordinary tournament for my family, as this was the first year of the “Steve Wright Classic,” which was named in memory of my dad. Going to the gym where my dad scored all those points, had all those rebounds and won all those wins was truly was amazing. It was a very emotional Friday night, as BU brought us onto center court underneath the retired jersey 33 before the game to recognize my father, I was witness to something that brought me to tears. The majority of the people in the stands didn’t know my father, but the amount of love and support that my family and I felt from their standing ovation made me cry. Me, a 6 foot 8 man with a full beard, crying. But that’s how much my dad meant and still means to me. I will never forget that night, so I want to thank Coach Jones and the BU Athletic Department for this amazing tribute to a truly great man.
I’ve had many coaches in my life, but the one who I really try to imitate is my first coach, my father. I even use his whistle that he used to blow whenever my friends and I would be goofing off, which was NEVER! (That’s a lie, if I remember correctly he used that often). His style of coaching was to be as positive a person as you can be. He taught the importance of being a good teammate and how you could be that. He used to love to call us a “wolfpack” because if a wolf goes out on it’s own, it most likely won’t survive. But when everyone stays together and helps one another, they will prosper. All of these values and lessons I learned from my father aligned right in with PeacePlayers and our approach to coaching. So when I am coaching the youth in Cyprus, I am trying to coach the way my father coached me because he showed me years before I ever heard of PeacePlayers, the foundation of what being a PPI coach entails. I know that is why I was able to become a part of the PPI family which has been the most rewarding experience of my life so far.
Thank you, Dad.