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Phil Jackson On Timeout Routines

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Positive Coaching Alliance’s National Spokesperson, Phil Jackson (@PhilJackson11), is perhaps the greatest basketball coach ever and among the best coaches in the history of American sports. He holds the NBA record of coaching 11 NBA Championship teams with the Chicago Bulls and Los Angeles Lakers. Now a New York Knicks executive, Jackson contributes to PCA’s mission through fundraising activities and event and video appearances. He also wrote the foreword to PCA Founder Jim Thompson's (@JimThompson18) book, The Double-Goal Coach®.

Phil Jackson shares his insights on how he effectively utilized timeouts during games. Given the distractions of a heated game, especially in a big arena, Jackson didn’t always try to talk to his whole group of players to make a difference in play after a timeout. Instead, he pulled a single individual aside to talk.

In these 1-on-1 situations, Jackson tried to guide players to refocusing, often by asking them to draw strength from a safe spot inside of them that would lift them up during a rough point in a game. This visualization routine he used with his players came in handy when there was a need to refocus on the court. Jackson references his success with Shaquille O'Neal when he worked on this with him, and how it helped in high-tension situations.