Just a couple weeks after watching his fellow NBA D-League national tryout coach/mentor James Posey find a job in the minor league, Zendon Hamilton has now snagged a gig of his own.
Hamilton and fellow St. John's alumni Rob Werdann have both joined Michael Peck's staff on the Idaho Stampede as assistant coaches. As we enter the new basketball season, the trio will face the difficult yet interesting task of helping the Stampede emerge from the D-League's doghouse. The team went 19-31 last season.
For Hamilton, such an appointment is simply a result of all his his recent efforts. Over the past year, he's served as a mentor at P.I.T. and NBA Summer League in Las Vegas (in addition to the national tryout). What's more, he also turned up at Springfield Armor open tryouts just last week to help head coach Doug Overton assess the talent.
Earlier this summer, the NBA veteran talked exclusively with RidiculousUpside.com about his motivation for putting in the work and his hopes for obtaining such a position.
A D-League alumni himself, Hamilton is certainly passionate about helping the next generation of talent along. A past journeyman himself, there's no doubt he can relate to what they're all going through. See below:
When asked what kinds of things he aims to instill in some of the young guns, be it while he was in New York or Las Vegas, the big man added, "For me, it's all about professional. Making personal relationships is also very big. Getting into a routine and making sure you're doing the same things everyday is important. Nutrition, too. My things are basic things that you need to be a basketball player. There are other things they'll be able to learn once they get there."
Of course, while it may be a bit of a letdown, the reality is that most NBA Summer League participants will likely end up back in the D-League and/or playing overseas after going through training camp with an NBA team this fall anyway. Getting to The Association once and for all is undoubtedly a journey, which is something Hamilton says he can relate to.
"I'm all about the journey, if that makes sense. Because I took one. I took the hard way to get there," he added. "The only way to get better is to take the journey. A lot of times, people can jump over the building, but sometimes, you've got to walk through it, too."