Saturday, November 8, 2008

A young player and his mentor

An article in the San Bernadino paper this week provides some insight into why 21-year-old Jordan Farmar has become not only a contributor for the Lakers, but a leader.

According to Derek Fisher, Farmar's mentor, Farmar hasn't rested on his laurels:

"What Jordan has done is he has not become complacent in his success. That's why he's continued to separate himself so early in his career. He's willing to put the hours in. Extra time watching film, looking at what he's done wrong and what he's done right. He's already a professional and that's why he's been able to be successful at his age."

In high schoool, Farmar "started collecting game tape of the league's best point guards - John Stockton, Magic Johnson and Jason Kidd. At UCLA, Chris Paul became a favorite. Farmar studied their moves, the way they led their teams, their technique. That was in addition to the extra jump shots he'd shoot every day, even during the summers, when he was in the gym five, six, sometimes even seven days in a week. He was so diligent, his high school coach...had to give him a key to the gym."

His approach to coming of the bench is impressive for a 21-year-old. Says Farmar:

"I'm very competitive, I want to be the best so it's really tough, but when you look at the big picture, you have to take everything into account. My time will come. I'm young, I'm 21 years old, there's no point in rushing it. When you're young, you're eager, you want to show what you can do. But everything happens in due time."

Fisher is also an ideal mentor for Farmar, whose respect for the 34-year-old Fisher is evident:

"He's been there before, he's done it, he's had his back against the wall and come through. He's made the big shots, won championships. Just talking to him about things, about life in general has been great for me."