Brutal Honesty from Playgrounder-turned-Pro

UP game #7 was outstanding, but not for the reason you might expect.  The game saw 23 kids in the Needham Ctr gym having, well, a ball.  But while the players were great and the game was super fun (and the snacks delicious), the highlight of the morn was Joey Haywood's powerful talk. 

The Halifax Hurricanes' point guard got brutally honest as he told of his life's arc, includng how he'd fallen painfully short academically before finally digging into the books as a SMU university student and achieving in the classroom beyond even his own expectations.  Oh, and he was also a perennial all-star on the court for the Huskies.  Joey wrapped by telling the rapt crowd: "There's a purpose for you being here. For everyone being on this earth. There's a reason why your heart is beating... find that purpose, go after what you want, and never give up.  No matter how hard it may be some days, tomorrow will be better.  You can - and will - get there if you work your butt off." 

In an age when everyone seems to expect things to come fast and easy, and attitude often swaggers ahead of aptitude, Joey's message was as powerful as 'King Handles' driving the lane.  And once you know how hard the man worked to make it to college, let alone carve out a career in the pros, rooting for Haywood just became layup easy.  Check out the team's schedule at: