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PHOTOS | Mitch Creek to junior Horsham basketballers: ‘Anything can be achieved’

Horsham basketball star Mitch Creek basketball leads a junior clinic at Horsham Basketball Stadium.

Horsham basketball star Mitch Creek basketball leads a junior clinic at Horsham Basketball Stadium.

By Colin MacGillivray
Mitch Creek will return to the USA this weekend, after a flying visit to his hometown of Horsham, as he continues to pursue his National Basketball Association career.
Creek returned to Horsham on Friday, leading a junior basketball clinic at Horsham Basketball Stadium and talking about his NBA experiences.
Creek made his debut in the world’s best basketball league last season with the Brooklyn Nets, signing two 10-day contracts with the team before joining the Minnesota Timberwolves for one game at the end of the season.
He will spend nearly two months training and working with the Timberwolves before the start of NBA Summer League, an off-season competition giving young and unsigned players a chance to showcase themselves to NBA teams.
Creek said he was hopeful of earning a contract with the Timberwolves for the 2019-20 season with a standout Summer League performance.
“I’ll go back to Minnesota, do a bit of pre-season and culture-building stuff, get myself fit and healthy and put myself in front of the right people again,” he said.
“Then it’s Summer League and I’ll try to help that team be as successful as possible on and off the court, and hopefully that’s enough to get myself a contract.

Mitch Creek basketball clinic at Horsham Basketball Stadium.

Mitch Creek basketball clinic at Horsham Basketball Stadium.

“If not, then I’ll come back loud and proud and play for the South East Melbourne Phoenix in the NBL.
“I definitely feel like things are in a good place.
“Timberwolves told me they see me as an important piece and a long-term piece. I just have to go back and continue being myself.”
Returning to the Wimmera for the first time in nine months, Creek reflected on what achieving his NBA dream meant to him.
He was audibly emotional in a video released by the Brooklyn Nets in January of assistant general manager Trajan Langdon calling him to tell him he had been offered his first NBA contract.
“You think about your life’s work – the sacrifices and everything you put on the line, everything you risked just to get there,” Creek said.
“Once it pays off you can’t even describe the feeling.
“It’s just a weightlessness of emotion that overcomes you pretty quick.
“It was a really special moment.”
Creek said his NBA experience had provided a steep learning curve.
He went from being a star and team captain of the Adelaide 36ers in Australia’s NBL to fighting for court time in the NBA, but said his level head and hard-working demeanour helped him succeed.
“I’ve always embodied my role,” he said.
“I’ve never been the flashy, show-off guy on court, I just play hard and I go about it the right way.
“Regardless of whether I play five minutes, 50 minutes or 20 seconds, it doesn’t matter; I’ll go out there and sacrifice for the team, I’ll make sure we’re on the same page offensively and defensively.

Mitch Creek basketball clinic at Horsham Basketball Stadium.

Mitch Creek basketball clinic at Horsham Basketball Stadium.

“I’ll make sure that if I get on the court, it’s playing the same way – it’s doing the little things and playing a brand of basketball that’s inspiring for others to follow. I think I did a really good job of trying to impact games that I played in in the minutes I had.”
Creek said he strived to foster a team culture of success off as well as on the court.
“You can’t just go there and be a basketball player, it’s more than that,” he said.
“There’s a culture you need to build so when people walk in the door for the first time they know we’re a family and a team, and we play the right way and go about it the right way.
“I try to make sure I embody that and then when people do come in, I try to make sure I help lead it and drive that culture through everyone else.
“If you do that and you have a good structure and a good base, it’s easy to build a beautiful home on top of it.
“I’m just trying to build a good foundation everywhere I go.”
When Creek last visited Horsham he spoke to the region’s young basketball players about his pursuit of an NBA contract.
He said it was a slightly surreal feeling to return nine months later having achieved his goal and telling many of the same children his story.
“Any time you come back to your hometown where you grew up is a special moment,” he said.
“You talk about things, you try to speak it into existence, and sometimes it happens and sometimes it doesn’t.
“Sometimes it’s just a dream that never gets fulfilled. For me it’s something that actually came true.
“I get to tell them, ‘this is what I spoke about last time, and this is what has transpired in the last nine months’.
“It’s achievable, you just have to sacrifice, believe in yourself, put in a lot of hard work and be curious about development and learning.
“If you can do that, anything is achievable, whether it’s sport or business or relationships – anything can be achieved.”

David Johns and Grant Kuchel chat with NBA player Mitch Creek on The Shirtfront.

David Johns and Grant Kuchel chat with NBA player Mitch Creek on The Shirtfront.

Mitch Creek basketball clinic at Horsham Basketball Stadium.

Mitch Creek basketball clinic at Horsham Basketball Stadium.

Mitch Creek basketball clinic at Horsham Basketball Stadium.

Mitch Creek basketball clinic at Horsham Basketball Stadium.

Mitch Creek basketball clinic at Horsham Basketball Stadium.

Mitch Creek basketball clinic at Horsham Basketball Stadium.

Mitch Creek basketball clinic at Horsham Basketball Stadium.

Mitch Creek basketball clinic at Horsham Basketball Stadium.

Mitch Creek basketball clinic at Horsham Basketball Stadium.

Mitch Creek basketball clinic at Horsham Basketball Stadium.

Mitch Creek basketball clinic at Horsham Basketball Stadium.

Mitch Creek basketball clinic at Horsham Basketball Stadium.

Mitch Creek basketball clinic at Horsham Basketball Stadium.

Mitch Creek basketball clinic at Horsham Basketball Stadium.

Mitch Creek basketball clinic at Horsham Basketball Stadium.

Mitch Creek basketball clinic at Horsham Basketball Stadium.

Mitch Creek basketball clinic at Horsham Basketball Stadium.

Mitch Creek basketball clinic at Horsham Basketball Stadium.

Mitch Creek basketball clinic at Horsham Basketball Stadium.

Mitch Creek basketball clinic at Horsham Basketball Stadium.

Mitch Creek basketball clinic at Horsham Basketball Stadium.

Mitch Creek basketball clinic at Horsham Basketball Stadium.

Mitch Creek basketball clinic at Horsham Basketball Stadium.

Mitch Creek basketball clinic at Horsham Basketball Stadium.

Mitch Creek basketball clinic at Horsham basketball Stadium.

Mitch Creek basketball clinic at Horsham basketball Stadium.

The entire May 8, 2019 edition of The Weekly Advertiser is available online. READ IT HERE!

Short URL: http://www.theweeklyadvertiser.com.au/?p=77900

Posted on May 15 2019

Posted by on May 15 2019. Filed under FEATURED, Sport. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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