How An Ex NBA All-Star Inadvertently Revealed The Mental Blueprint Of Success

Anthony Robert
5 min readFeb 14, 2021
Photo by Nick Jio on Unsplash

As a lifelong Cavs fan, I hated Gilbert Arenas.

Gilbert Arenas was a Cavs killer. He had a clutch shot, smooth moves, a James Bond nickname (Agent Zero), and caused me more heartache than a lonely trucker coming home to find sweet Dolly, laying with the Waffle House busboy.

(No offense Dolly.)

Years later, I want to thank Gilbert Arenas for an insight that changed my life.

I guess in God’s divine wisdom, what you once hate, with new eyes, you can find reasons to love. Poetic justice keeps being written, I suppose.

Have you ever heard a piece of wisdom so good and so obvious that you get mad for not thinking about it first?

That was me hearing Gilbert Arenas speak.

Let’s unpack the story.

Lebron James is some kid from Akron who happens to be the world’s best basketball player. Maybe you’ve heard of him. He’s not to be confused with the other Lebron James, who works at the change oil station down the road.

He has a son named Bronny James, who, like his father, appears to be exceptionally talented at basketball.

Lebron requested that Gilbert Arenas, an Ex-NBA All-Star and certified court king give him a scouting report on his son. He recapped this on the “Load Management” Podcast and had this to say:

“‘He’s you. From what I can tell right now, he probably has a better shot than you did. Dribbles better than you. You guys probably have the same passing ability. You are probably faster, taller. He probably jumps higher.’ And he said ‘Dead on!’”

“And I said, ‘The difference between you and him at this point is you needed basketball to get out of where you were getting out of. He doesn’t need basketball because you did it already.’”

Damn. This is everything.

You needed basketball to get out.” That simple sentence is an otherworldly insight into the blueprint of mastering the mental game of success. Let’s magnify this one more notch to get to the heart of the matter. One word says it all: “Need.

Anthony Robert

Best-selling author, humorist and all-around-writer-guy. I believe in the power of a good message.