Michael and Owen were both teammates on the varsity basketball team. They had a great season and made the playoffs, but during the final stretch before the playoffs, Owen injured his ankle. Both players knew that once the playoffs started, they would be about even against the other teams they were going up against in terms of talent. They would need to have Owen back at nearly full strength in order to stand a chance. What they also needed was to have an edge.
Coach always told them that having a positive attitude can pay huge dividends. He would give speeches to inspire his players and increase their confidence. Michael decided he was going to do the same to help Owen get back to the team. He hung out with Owen during their workouts at the gym, and Michael was the first person to celebrate with Owen when the team doctor cleared Owen for practice. Meanwhile, Owen also realized that Michael would have to carry a bigger scoring load while Owen was out. He would show up at practice every day even though he couldn’t play in order to encourage Michael and their teammates. “No one can stop you but you,” Owen would shout to Michael after every shot Michael made in practice. After the first playoff game when Michael scored the game winning shot, the entire team stormed the court, including Owen who only had a slight limp. Michael credited his teammates, especially Owen, on helping him have the confidence to take and make that final shot. Both Michael’s and Owen’s enthusiasm and confidence were infectious and soon the entire team had a swagger, and this was just in time for Owen to make his playoff debut. Owen started off the game with a thunderous slam dunk that rattled the rim. The whole team realized at that moment that nobody could stop them but themselves.