Practicing with the best competition makes perfect

The US men’s basketball team won the 1992 Olympics in Barcelona. I remember watching the games as a kid.

There was a huge difference between the US team and every other team at the Olympics. In fact the US team beat each of its opponents by at least 38 points in the tournament. For those unfamiliar with basketball, most games end with a margin less than 10 points.

While each of the US players was individually talented, together as a team they were much more than the sum of their parts. Their performance during the games was simply the outcome of the underlying practice sessions that they had in the run up to the Olympics. In fact, in the video below Michael Jordan refers to the scrimmages they had during these practice sessions as the best basketball games that he has ever played in. This is because he was competing against the likes of Magic Johnson and Larry Bird.

Practice doesn’t make perfect. Practicing with the best competition does.

Also published on Medium.