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Basketball Quotes

Browse through team names to find basketball quotes for players.


Check out our complete list of quotes.

  • Champions play as they practice. Create a consistency of excellence in all your habits. — Mike Krzyzewski
  • You can’t get much done in life if you only work on the days when you feel good. Jerry West (born May, 1938)
  • Everybody on a championship team doesn’t get publicity, but everyone can say he’s a champion. Magic Johnson (born August, 1959)
  • If all I'm remembered for is being a good basketball player, then I've done a bad job with the rest of my life. - Isiah Thomas
  • Hardwork beats talent when talent doesn’t work hard. – Kevin Durant
  • If you meet the Buddha in the lane, feed him the ball. - Phil Jackson
  • There are really only two plays: Romeo and Juliet and put the darn ball in the basket. — Abe Lemons
  • It’s what you get from games you lose that is extremely important. Pat Riley (born March 1945)
  • There are really only two plays: Romeo and Juliet, and put the darn ball in the basket. - Abe Lemons
  • I never looked at the consequences of missing a big shot... when you think about the consequences you always think of a negative result." by Michael Jordan
  • I’m not against taking shots, but I am against taking bad shots. — Hank Iba
  • A winner is someone who recognizes his God- given talents, works his tail off to develop them into skills, and uses these skills to accomplish his goals. Motivational Quote by Larry Bird
  • My definition of discipline is as follows: 1) Do what has to be done, when it has to be done, as well as it can be done, and 2) Do it that way all the time. — Bob Knight
  • As far as carrying the torch for the years to come, I don’t know. I just want to be the best basketball player I can be. Kobe Bryant (born August, 1978)
  • Basketball is like photography, if you don't focus, all you have is the negative. - Dan Frisby
  • I've always believed that if you put in the work, the results will come. I don't do things half-heartedly. Because I know if I do, then I can expect half-hearted results. Michael Jordan motivational quote
  • If you accept the expectations of others, especially negative ones, then you never will change the outcome. Michael Jordan
  • You can run a lot of plays when your X is twice as big as the other guys' O. It makes your X's and O's pretty good. - Paul Westphal
  • You always have to give 100%,because if you don’t someone, somewhere will give 100% and they will beat you when you meet. by Ed Macauley (born March, 1928)
  • Michael, if you can’t pass, you can’t play. Coach Dean Smith to Michael Jordan (when he was at UNC)
  • It is far better to shoot an airball than to not shoot at all for fear of missing. — Tony Alfonso
  • One man can be a crucial ingredient on a team, but one man cannot make a team. - Kareem Abdul-Jabbar
  • In all the research you do as a coach, studying other coaches and championship-type situations, you find that all those teams combined talent with great defense. You’ve got to stop other teams to win. Pat Riley quote
  • The best teams have chemistry. They communicate with each other and they sacrifice personal glory for a common goal. — Dave DeBusschere
  • Obstacles don’t have to stop you. If you run into a wall, don’t turn around and give up. Figure out how to climb it, go through it, or work around it. Motivational Quote by Michael Jordan
  • Basketball is like war in that offensive weapons are developed first, and it always takes a while for the defense to catch up. Red Auerbach (September, 1917 - October, 2006)
  • I used a lot of visualization in terms of who I would be guarding and who would be guarding me. When I was walking down the street for, say, lunch, I’d imagine those individuals in front of me. I’d imagine going around them. Isaiah Thomas (born Apri, 1961)
  • We try to stress the little things because little things lead to big things. Steve Alford (born November, 1964)
  • I’ve missed more than 9000 shots in my career. I’ve lost almost 300 games. 26 times, I’ve been trusted to take the game winning shot and missed. I’ve failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed. — Michael Jordan
  • My attitude is that if you push me towards something that you think is a weakness, then I will turn that perceived weakness into a strength. by Michael Jordan
  • When I was young, I never wanted to leave the court until I got things exactly correct. My dream was to become a pro. by Larrry Bird
  • I will not let anything get in the way of me and my competitive enthusiasm to win. — Michael Jordan
  • The secret is to have eight great players and four others who will cheer like crazy. - Jerry Tarkanian
  • I’ve always considered myself a crunch-time player. I just love having the ball in my hands. Everyone in the arena knows the ball is supposed to be in your hands and you still make it. It’s the odds. I love the odds. — Reggie Miller
  • What you specifically teach is what your players will do best. Dick Bennett (born April, 1943)
  • Show respect for yourself and for your team by working hard and diligently practicing the skills that will give us a good team.
  • Think of new ways to do old things. You must protect against boredom in a practice situation. — George Raveling
  • A winner is someone who recognizes his God-given talents, works his tail off to develop them into skills and uses these skills to accomplish his goals. — Larry Bird
  • Everyone is born with a certain potential. You may never achieve your full potential, but how close you come depends on how much you want to pay the price. — Red Auerbach
  • The only difference between a good shot and a bad shot is if it goes in or not. by Charles Barkley (February, 1963)
  • Doing the best you are capable of doing is victory in itself, and less than that is defeat. — John Wooden
  • It’s just a matter of getting those legs back. – Kobe Bryant
  • All the successful teams I’ve ever seen have three characteristics: They play unselfish, they play together, and they play hard. — Larry Brown
  • Winning is more related to good defense than good offense – Dr. Jack Ramsay
  • Sometimes a player's greatest challenge is coming to grips with his role on the team. - Scottie Pippen
  • Some people want it to happen, some wish it would happen, others make it happen. Michael Jordan
  • Me shooting 40% at the foul line is just God’s way to say nobody’s perfect. by Shaquille O’Neal
  • My responsibility is getting all my players playing for the name on the front of the jersey, not the one on the back. - Author Unknown
  • Basketball, more than any other sport, is a team game…about the thousands of small, unselfish acts, the sacrifices on the part of the players that result in team building. — Dean Smith
  • If you’re not talking, you’re not playing defense – Doc Rivers
  • Everybody pulls for David, nobody roots for Goliath. - Wilt Chamberlain
  • One man can be a crucial ingredient on a team, but one man cannot make a team. by Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (born April, 1947)
  • Don’t let what other people think decide who you are. Dennis Rodman (born May, 1961)
  • Teams that play together beat those with superior players who play more as individuals. — Jack Ramsay
  • Morale and attitude are the fundamentals to success. Bud Wilkinson motivational quote
  • Well-coached teams are never surprised; they can adapt to anything they see. — Jack Ramsay
  • I don't believe professional athletes should be role models. I believe parents should be role models... - Charles Barkley
  • For order and a society to exist – and a basketball team is a society within itself – it needs discipline. — Joe B. Hall
  • Practice habits were crucial to my development in basketball. I didn’t play against the toughest competition in high school, but one reason I was able to do well in college was that I mastered the fundamentals. You’ve got to have them down before you can even think about playing. — Larry Bird
  • Sometimes, adrenaline flows into momentum. — Dennis Johnson
  • When I was young, I never wanted to leave the court until I got things exactly correct. My dream was to become a pro. - Larry Bird
  • If you practice with emotion and purpose you’ll play with passion and confidence.
  • Being a part of success is more important than being personally indispensable. by Pat Riley
  • When you go out on the court whether it be for the championship or just a scrimmage, have confidence that your abilities and what you’ve learned in your drills are better than your opponent’s. This does not mean you should disregard your opponent. Before taking the court for any game, you should do a lot of thinking about what you have to do to beat your opponent and what he must or can do to beat you. — Bob Pettit
  • There may be people that have more talent than you, but there’s no excuse for anyone to work harder than you do. Derek Jeter (born June, 1974)
  • My heroes are and were my parents. I can't see having anyone else as my heroes. Michael Jordan quote
  • Basketball doesn't build character it reveals it. Unknown
  • I have missed more than 9000 shots in my career. I have lost almost 300 games. On 26 occasions I have been entrusted to take the game winning shot .. and missed. And I have failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why... I succeed. Micheal Jordan quote
  • Winning teams at the NBA level, the college level, and the high school level all play team basketball. Championship teams have five players on the same page at all times. — Hubie Brown
  • Good, better, best. Never let it rest. Until your good is better and your better is best. - Tim Duncan
  • They say that nobody is perfect. Then they tell you practice makes perfect. I wish they'd make up their minds. - Wilt Chamberlain
  • First master the fundamentals. - Larry Bird
  • You have to expect things of yourself before you can do them. Michael Jordan
  • I can teach you how to dribble, pass and shoot the right way, but I cannot make you do it the right way. - Jeff Tufford
  • Athletes that can’t listen, can condition. — Chuck Daly
  • Talent wins games, but teamwork and intelligence wins championships. Motivational Quote by Michael Jordan
  • I've never been afraid to fail. Michael Jordan quote
  • If all I'm remembered for is being a good basketball player, then I've done a bad job with the rest of my life. by Isaiah Thomas
  • I’ll do whatever it takes to win games, whether it’s sitting on a bench waving a towel, handing a cup of water to a teammate, or hitting the game-winning shot. by Kobe Bryant
  • Everybody pulls for David, nobody roots for Goliath. Wilt Chamberlain (August, 1936 - October, 1999)
  • What to do with a mistake – recognize it, admit it, learn from it, forget it. — Dean Smith
  • Be strong in body, clean in mind, lofty in ideals. James Naismith (November, 1861 - November, 1939) Inventor of Basketball
  • Winning is like deodorant - it comes up and a lot of things don't stink. - Doc Rivers
  • Any American boy can be a basketball star if he grows up, up, up. - Bill Vaughn
  • If you want to thank me, go do something for somebody else – Don Meyer
  • On any given night, anyone can beat anyone. - Author Unknown
  • I never thought a role model should be negative. Michael Jordan
  • Basketball is a beautiful game when the five players on the court play with one heartbeat. — Dean Smith
  • Good, better, best. Never let it rest. Until your good is better and your better is best. Tim Duncan (born April, 1976)
  • Be strong in body, clean in mind, lofty in ideals. - James Naismith
  • We're shooting 100 percent - 60 percent from the field and 40 percent from the free-throw line. - Norm Stewart
  • I never looked at the consequences of missing a big shot … When you think about the consequences, you always think of a negative result. — Michael Jordan
  • If you think small things don't matter, think of the last game you lost by one point. - Author Unknown
  • Sometimes a player's greatest challenge is coming to grips with his role on the team. Scottie Pippen (born September, 1965)
  • When it comes to team dynamics — on a basketball court or in a corporate setting — maintaining a positive atmosphere is crucial. — Rick Pitino, Rebound Rules: The Art of Success 2.0
  • Blending the talents of your team members is crucial to basketball success. — John Kundla
  • Even when I'm old and gray, I won't be able to play it, but I'll still love the game. - Michael Jordan
  • Talent wins games, but teamwork and intelligence wins championships. — Michael Jordan
  • Create unselfishness as the most important team attribute. — Bill Russell
  • My responsibility is getting all my players playing for the name on the front of the jersey, not the one on the back. Unknown
  • Mental toughness is to physical as four is to one. — Bob Knight
  • Everything negative - pressure, challenges - are all an opportunity for me to rise. Kobe Bryant
  • Always turn a negative situation into a positive situation. Michael Jordan
  • It is not how big you are, it is how big you play. - Author Unknown
  • The idea is not to block every shot. The idea is to make your opponent believe that you might block every shot. - Bill Russell
  • You don't play against opponents. You play against the game of basketball. by Bobby Knight (born October, 1940)
  • Basketball is a game that gives you every chance to be great, and puts every pressure on you to prove that you haven’t got what it takes. It never takes away the chance, and it never eases up on the pressure. — Bob Sundvold
  • Other people go to an office. I get to coach. I know I’ve been blessed. — Jim Valvano
  • You must be sure that you give back something that’s beneficial to the game. Any of the teaching you do must be for the benefit of the men who play. — Hank Iba
  • Most players prepare for disaster. A good player prepares for success. — Tony Alfonso
  • The great players show how much they want to play during the offseason — when it’s hot, when it’s tough, and when no one is watching. — Tony Alfonso, The Mentally Tough Shooting Workout
  • You never make any of the shots you never take. 87% of the ones you do take, you’ll miss too. I make 110% of my shots. Larry Bird
  • Players know how to dribble, shoot and pass. The challenge is to teach them why they should do it a certain way, and when they should do it. — Marv Harshman
  • Just play. Have fun. Enjoy the game. Michael Jordan quote
  • The first time I shot the hook, I was in fourth grade, and I was about five feet eight inches tall. I put the ball up and felt totally at ease with the shot. I was completely confident it would go in. I've been shooting it ever since. - Kareem Abdul-Jabbar
  • I can accept failure, everyone fails at something. But I can’t accept not trying. Michael Jordan Motivational Quote
  • Teamwork is really a form of trust. It’s what happens when you surrender the mistaken idea that you can go it alone and realize that you won’t achieve your individual goals without the support of your colleagues. — Pat Summitt
  • Left hand, right hand, it doesn't matter. I'm amphibious. - Charles Shackleford
  • Practice to beat the best. by Dick Bennett
  • You never make any of the shots you never take. 87% of the ones you do take, you’ll miss too. I make 110% of my shots. — Larry Bird
  • Push yourself again and again. Don’t give an inch until the final buzzer sounds. Larry Bird quote
  • We are not going to play them; they are going to play us. — Hank Iba
  • If you make every game a life and death proposition, you're going to have problems. For one thing, you'll be dead a lot. - Dean Smith
  • Basketball doesn't build character it reveals it. - Author Unknown
  • Our goal is not to win. It’s to play together and play hard. Then, winning takes care of itself. — Mike Krzyzewski
  • I try to do the right thing at the right time. They may just be little things, but usually they make the difference between winning and losing. - Kareem Abdul-Jabbar
  • Some people believe you win with your five best players, but I found out that you win with the five who fit together best. — Red Auerbach
  • There are plenty of teams in every sport that have great players and never win titles. Most of the time, those players aren't willing to sacrifice for the greater good of the team. The funny thing is, in the end, their unwillingness to sacrifice only makes individual goals more difficult to achieve. One thing I believe to the fullest is that if you think and achieve as a team, the individual accolades will take care of themselves. Talent wins games, but teamwork and intelligence win championships." by Michael Jordan
  • You can practice shooting eight hours a day, but if your technique is wrong, then all you become is very good at shooting the wrong way. Get the fundamentals down and the level of everything you do will rise. Michael Jordan
  • I know the Virginia players are smart because you need a 1500 SAT to get in. I have to drop bread crumbs to get our players to and from class. - George Raveling
  • I know fear is an obstacle for some people, but it is an illusion to me . . . Failure always made me try harder next time. Michael Jordan
  • Go up to the free throw line knowing your going to make it, not knowing you won’t miss. — Hilary Ashmead
  • Use different basketball offensive alignments to cause confusion for the other team– Hubie Brown
  • People ask me if I could fly, I said, yeah.... for a little while." Michael Jordan quotation
  • If I walk in a home and a kid disrespects a woman, his mother or grandmother, then I am out… I wont recruit them – John Calipari
  • If you meet the Buddha in the lane, feed him the ball. by Phil Jackson (born September, 1945)
  • Your best players have to unite and inspire the group… otherwise, they’ll divide the group – Jeff Van Gundy
  • We have a great bunch of outside shooters. Unfortunately, all our games are played indoors. - Weldon Drew
  • I play to win, whether during practice or a real game. And I will not let anything get in the way of me and my competitive enthusiasm to win. Michael Jordan quotation
  • You can’t get much done in life if you only work in the days when you feel good. – Jerry West
  • The game of basketball is a game of accepting failure; of accepting imperfection; of realizing that the perfect game has never been played, never will be played, or ever could be played. — Tony Alfonso
  • When a gifted team dedicates itself to unselfish trust and combines instinct with boldness and effort–it is ready to climb. — Pat Riley
  • Basketball is like war in that offensive weapons are developed first, and it always takes a while for the defense to catch up. - Red Auerbach
  • The idea is not to block every shot. The idea is to make your opponent believe that you might block every shot. by Bill Russell (born February, 1934)
  • Not only is there more to life than basketball, there's a lot more to basketball than basketball. Phil Jackson
  • If you are afraid of failure you don’t deserve to be successful! Charles Barkley
  • Play the game with a smile. — Earl The Pearl Monroe
  • One man can be a crucial ingredient on a team, but one man cannot make a team. - Kareem Abdul-Jabbar
  • Practice to beat the best. — Dick Bennett
  • Not only is there more to life than basketball, there’s a lot more to basketball than basketball. — Phil Jackson
  • We believe in people executing their role and caring about the team more than anything individually – Gregg Popovich
  • When you miss a shot, never think of what you did wrong. Take the next shot thinking of what you must do right. — Tony Alfonso
  • Basketball is like photography, if you don't focus, all you have is the negative. by Dan Frisby
  • You got to have the killer instinct. If you do not have it, forget about basketball and go into social psychology or something. If you sometimes wonder if you’ve got it, you ain’t got it. No pussycats, please. — Bill Russell
  • If you want team play, you must stress defense. Defense makes players unselfish. John Brady (born September, 1954)
  • Never mistake activity for achievement. John Wooden (born October, 1910)
  • What do you do with a mistake: recognize it, admit it, learn from it, forget it – Dean Smith
  • Fans never fall asleep at our games, because they're afraid they might get hit by a pass. - George Raveling