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Coach Reggie Theus: Never quit!

Reggie Theus: Looking forward to molding the game of young phenom Kobe Paras. csunshinetoday.csun.edu

The NBA has continued to bring players to visit the country, both active and retired, to further inspire the youth in their quest to improve in the sport of basketball.

The latest was when Reggie Theus was in town to share his knowledge on the game with the participants of the Jr. NBA program.

Theus played in the NBA in 1978-91 for Chicago, Sacramento, Atlanta, Orlando, and New Jersey in a storied career with averages of 18.5 points, 6.3 assists, and 3.3 rebounds.

He then went on to coaching, with stints with Sacramento in the NBA and in the collegiate ranks with New Mexico State and now with Cal State Northridge.

He is now popular with the Filipino fans because he is the current coach of young phenom Kobe Paras. He looks forward to trying to mold the game of Paras, just like he has helped several of his players realize their dream of playing in the pros.

PHILIPPINE STAR: Coach, talk to us about your experience here, it seems that you’re enjoying yourself here in the country. 

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REGGIE THEUS: Oh, it’s a blast! I mean, I haven’t shot the ball in a long time so it took me a lot to get warmed up, but you know watching the 3-on-3, the excitement around the arena here, I think it’s a great event and that the Philippines and the NBA is a great marriage.

What were the most special moments for you in the NBA?

You know, the special moments are just being in the NBA, in general. And then, afterwards, being able to do things like this. Having a chance to compete and really have that camaraderie with your teammates, those are the things that are really special.

Now that you’re coaching, what do you try to impart to your young boys?

Well, number one, that to be successful, you have to get an education. To be successful, it’s not always about basketball but being a successful person. You know, what we are as college coaches,  we are mentors and you know I just love the fact that I have a hand in building these young men in their lives. So, it’s been really good for me.

Is it getting harder for you to keep them in college ’coz everybody wants to turn pro at a young age?

Well, everybody wants to turn pro, but everybody can’t turn pro. Even though they try, that’s really their aspiration. You don’t want to kill their dreams, you want to keep them hungry, but you know the truth is, only half of a percent make it to the NBA. But it’s the effort! It’s the try! Never quit, never die! — it’s the thing that keeps everyone going! 

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