In lieu of the recent NBA lockout and the subsequent retirement of its premier star attraction, Michael Jordan, reading Sacred Hoops, brilliantly written by former Bulls' coach Phil Jackson, provides a very refreshing and thought-provoking look into the money-driven and often soulessness world of professional basketball. The book takes a wonderful look into the mind of Jackson, raised by Pentacostal parents in Montana, who later became enlightened by Zen and Native American principles during his playing career with the New York Knicks and early coaching stints in Albany, N.Y. and Puerto Rico. Jackson's higher wisdom of teamwork - his philosophy of preaching the expression of the power of mindfulness and compassion in action - became a paradigm for his success in guiding the Bulls to six NBA championships in the 1990s (the paperback edition chronicles through the 1995-96 season). The book also serves as an insightful memoir full of stories about Jordan, Scottie Pippen, Toni Kukoc and Dennis Rodman. For devotees of Jordan, Sacred Hoops serves as a nice complement to other books written about him and shows how Jackson instilled in Jordan - and his teammates - the ability to act with a clear mind and stay calmly focused at all times; how he changed the Bulls into a team that served the "we" instead of "me". Sacred Hoops is an inspiring book - one which you won't want to put down.
Having read this book about 3 times already, I can truly say that Phil Jackson has discovered how to make players into superstars and superstars into players. The only thing that seperates players at the NBA level is mental toughness and this book outlines the what, how and why he did it. To get the greatest player ever to play in a team concept is tough and he's done it successfully.This book also provided me with an insight into the art of zen and it's implication on this great game. To summarize, I would recommend this book to anyone who wishes to learn about Phil Jackson and his success in Chigaco
Fantastic book. Phil Jackson explicitly presents a beauty of basketball. He explains what it means to form a successful team and what conditions have to be satisfied to win an NBA championship. He also describes his past and Zen philosophy. Everything kept in a very interesting form. Very readable.
Worth reading and absolutely 'must read' for all basketball fans.
A great story, but only a good book. Really this is what I think is honest to say about this work. This is because for as much as I have loved reading about the making of the best basketball team in history from such a privileged angle and for as much as I love the man himself and what he preaches for, yet to be objective the narrative does not live up to the wealth of the content. Rhythm is probably what is missing the most, with frequent gaps in the story and a general fluidity that is severely lacking. Basically, the story does not flow as it should and often it struggles through meaningless yet lenghty stretches only to rush over episodes which would deserve to be explored in full depth. But this is from an objective point of view and only relating to the literary side of the book; personally I would recommend it to anyone and talking about the content this opera should be studied, and well, by anyone willing to coach any team in any given sport. A marvellous lesson from a marvellous teacher. Thus five stars and thus READ IT!!
This is a very easy read about one of the most famous coaches in world sport making his way in the basketball world and the lessons he learned along the way. There are also some interesting sections on how he attempted to manage a sports star, Michael Jordan, who had the sports world and beyond at his feet.
This book helped me find peace with myself on the basketball court. Concepts of teamwork and selflessness have never been drilled home so well. My attitude on the court completely turned around after I read and understood this book. I wouldn't go so far to say it changed my life, but it definitely changed my life between the lines of the court.
This book was great for an explanation of Jackson's coaching philosophy. I was looking for insights into how he lead his talent for lessons for business leaders and this book delivered. A refreshing alternative to command-and-control, Jackson's mix of Zen and Indian philosophy in another context could seem flakey: from someone who took the Bulls to 5 chanpionships in 9 years, it's amazing and inspiring. A great book from an outstanding coach.
In today's me world, an attitude by no means limited to atheletics (witness the runaway salaries of today's CEOs), examples of people who grasp that the most effective path to strength is the one that leads through community are precious and too rare. Mr. Jackson allows us to follow the evolution of the Bulls from a group of very talented individuals into a team in the best sense of the word. There are lessons galore of all shapes and sizes, but the one that I most appreciated is that the pursuit of excellence can be very successful without sacrificing honor, trust and commitment to something outside of ourselves. And make no mistake, Mr. Jackson is a winner of the first order. Sacred Hoops should be mandatory reading for every high school athelete in this country.
This book is great reading for those who lose faith in modern day sports and society in general. For once, you hear someone talk about teamwork, selflessness, sacrifice, positive attitude, etc. These are foreign concepts to most of today's NBA stars, but are what success is really all about. I also applaud Phil Jackson for daring to be different. Seeing things differently is often at the core of many successes. In this case, its using the power of the mind and selfless attitudes that are positioned as keys to taking you to the top. These ideas transcend basketball and make for good reading for anyone. I only wish their were more "originals" with a conscience like Phil Jackson.
Phil Jackson seems to be one of the more intelligent coaches in the game. His ability to get people to work together...his knowledge of what buttons to push and when to push them is to be admired. He writes of a season with the Bulls and how they overcame their trials and tribulations--not unlike Pat Riley's book "The Winner Within." However Jackson takes a deeper philosophical look at why and how things happened. Good as a retrospective of the season, very good as a book on life.