The Cowens Mystique (Part VI)

Cowens was flawed.

He needed a better variety of inside moves in order to take full advantage of his abnormal quickness. He never learned to set a decent pick (a maneuver in which an offensive player places himself in the intended path of a defender in order to provide room for a teammate to shoot unimpeded), an odd fault considering his willingness to administer and absorb punishment. Worse yet, he never felt comfortable using one. He could have scored many more baskets by slipping behind a pick and taking an open fifteen- foot jump shot, but his normal reaction was to refuse that type of aid. A natural left-hander, he had very limited use of his right hand.

I was never good at one-on-one basketball. I didn't dribble well. People basically knew my moves. If I was low, I was going to turn to the middle and take my hook with a big step. I had my power moves and my spin move. And I could pass the ball. Outside, I could stick it when things were going good. I could take one or two dribbles, but handling the ball and driving were probably the weakest parts of my game.

The strongest aspect was helping on defense, talking, just wanting to help. Since I helped my teammates, I thought they would play harder on defense. The rebounding, the screening off - to me this was the last part of defense.

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