The Raptors are minus a staff member.
Dave Hopla, who joined the team as a basketball development consultant last season, is leaving to become an assistant coach with the Washington Wizards, NBA sources told The Star.
Widely known as one of the better shooting coaches in the NBA, Hopla joined the Raptors staff last November after earning a reputation by working with such star players as Kobe Bryant, Ray Allen and Sue Bird of the WNBA Seattle Storm.
Dave Hopla, acknowledged as the best shooting coach in the US, was brought in to help the Raps improve their percentages in what was to be a season of 100 shots a game average. The reasoning was obvious. If you could get that many shots, and your % was in the high 40′s, you were going to score 106 – 110 per game. And your lack of defence would not be such an issue. And your lack of offensive rebounds wouldn’t hurt as much, because there would be fewer rebounds under the opponents basket to get.
I did a little looking around the internet and found out a little more about Mr. Hopla. He is a regular on the motivational speakers circuit. His talks are entertaining because he shoots hoops all through his talks, making close to 99% of his shots. His theme is Success requires Practice. Here’s a summary I found from a website featuring Massie Lectures about learning:
By: Dave Feschuk
As a recent Raptors practice broke up, the best shooter in the gym was only beginning his work. Dave Hopla, Toronto’s shooting coach, stood on the free-throw line with ball in hand and a hoop to himself. As many players headed for the showers, the swishes began to rain.
Many minutes passed until T.J. Ford, the swaggering point guard, approached Hopla, who, with one bounce and one pump of the knees, was making one free throw after another.
Hire assistant coach Hopla to make ‘adjustments’
By: Doug Smith
Dave Hopla is a self-professed shooting “guru” who makes some of his living delivering motivational speeches and now he’s going to try to help the Raptors become better marksmen with his word and his deeds.
The team has hired Hopla as a “basketball development consultant,” which is a gussied-up title for shooting coach.
And for a squad that’s among the worst shooting teams in the NBA, any little bit of help can’t hurt.
Aim is to Improve Accuracy
By: Mike Koreen
At best, the Raptors have hired the perfect guy to lead the team out of its season-long shooting slump.
At worst, they have another man to keep an eye on those evil road scorekeepers.
Dave Hopla, who, according to his personal web site, is “considered by many to be the top shooter in the world,” is back with the Raptors for the second time in the past three years. But this time he has a more significant role.
(TORONTO) –The Toronto Raptors announced Monday they have hired Dave Hopla as a basketball development consultant. Hopla, considered to be one of the premier shot instructors in the world, joined the team today at practice and will accompany Toronto on its two-game road trip this week.
Hopla has worked with numerous NBA, WNBA and NCAA teams, including the Toronto Raptors during the team’s 2004 training camp at Brock University. His past clients include Ray Allen, Sue Bird and Kobe Bryant. Hopla also runs his own College and Youth camps during the summer.
Hopla is a New Jersey native and spent time playing basketball in the Continental Basketball Association, Europe and South America.
Link to Original Article.
During the 2006 NBA All-Star game in Houston, Dave Hopla attempted to break the Guinness World Record for most three-point foul shots made in one minute. Well Dave accomplished that goal by hitting 20 trays in one minute for a new Guinness World Record! Boston Celtics star and Spalding endorser Paul Pierce netted 19 three-pointers to tie the previous World Record in a special appearance at Spalding’s court at Jam Session.
Link to Original Article.
If you asked me to name the one thing I most enjoyed at TechLearn this year it was Dave Hopla. He’s the US’s top basketball coach. Hugely entertaining. I’m a basketball fanatic, but even if you have never played or seen the game, watching someone put 110 out of 111 shots through the hoop was astonishing. Even more astonishing was the fact that as he was shooting, he was giving his talk. He even shot backwards and over his head from 6 yards and still scored!
By: Andy Katz
LONDON — Coach K picked up his first technical of the season Sunday. In London, no less, from British official Richard Stokes.
An exhibition tour? Not exactly.
Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski was in mid-season form when it came to a call that wasn’t made on a loose ball and foul that could have been interpreted as an intentional foul on Duke’s Daniel Ewing. He was animated at his post players for failing to offer some weak-side help; not thrilled with their inability to stop dribble penetration; and the overall late fouls his players were committing after they got beat certainly bothered the Hall of Famer.
By: Allen St. John
The New York Times
When Balzac got writer’s block, he took off all his clothes and hung a wreath of garlic around his neck. When I get writer’s block, I play basketball. When the paragraphs aren’t flowing, and I find that I’m spending more time checking the word count than adding to it, I lace up my Chuck Taylors, grab my well worn Wilson from the bathroom closet and make a beeline to the hoop attached to my garage.
And then I take a side trip to the Madison Square Garden of my mind, complete with a Marv Albert play-by-play. “Knicks down by two, the clock’s running down. Sprewell at the top of the key, double-teamed, he passes to St. John,” me, “who fakes left, moves right and shoots. It’s, it’s an airball.”