How many of us can say we know of street players even more talented than those that are paid millions of dollars to entertain us? Could this be due to the lack of effort by the athlete, or simply a poor attitude? For years, NFL coaches have used the term “DNDC” when drafting players. This is code for “Do Not Draft Because of Character.” Specifically, Tony Dungy (Indianapolis Colts retired coach) states in his book Uncommon that “Coaching ability or talent cannot make up for a lack of character.” No matter how great the athlete, professional leagues will pass up the opportunity to draft talent based on a lack of character and bad ethics.
This week Wall Ball World is proud to introduce you to an NYC 1-wall big ball athlete who is both a gentleman on and off the court. He placed 3rd out of 48 competitors in the PHA Men’s B Singles Event. He is a rising star with a great attitude and for him this is only the beginning – Meet Alex Mendez
In his own words…
When I was first introduced to handball I was heavily into basketball and had no interest in the game but a family member was able to convince me to get on the court with him and I’ve been hooked ever since. Handball is such a great sport on so many levels. It’s great exercise, fun, and extremely competitive. People who are not too familiar with the game will one day come to appreciate it. I mean, look how popular tennis is. If people can love tennis there is definitely hope for handball. They have similar traits.
I think we can improve handball in NYC by way of the organizations that run tournaments. We need to keep things fair, more organized and drama free. Most importantly, every organization should support each other so we can continue to see this sport grow!
Congratulations to our new Player of the Week, Alex Mendez!
Alex Mendez vs Carlos Pena aka “Lil Carlos”
Note to players & organizations
I would like to remind today’s handball athletes that their character and the way in which they treat each other on and off the court is much more important than their game. Promoters today must take a serious no-tolerance rule with a player’s conduct. What I witnessed at the PHA event was players cursing and disrespecting referees and their opponents during matches and NO penalties were enforced. Many of us have worked too hard to organize events to promote the sport that we all cherish so much to be disrespected. In my prime there was so much more respect for the competitor and old-school players. In those days attitude was not tolerated! There came a time when even I had to learn how to control my temper when I felt I was being cheated or disrespected back in the days. What the top players today must realize is that so many players respect them to the point they want to act the same way they do which is now being seen in B/C events all over.
We as promoters should give out awards for players who show the proper attitude during events. If everyone knows a player that is disruptive then he/she should be banned for the season like that young man who won the PHA tournament who I personally have no respect for. The show-boating must stop as well because people all over the world today are watching our attitude more than ever before. I would love to see handball make it to the Olympics someday but the best players in the world must lead by example. In my prime there was so much respect, we all felt like one huge handball family. If this negative pattern keeps up then I will advise promoters to have invitational tournaments only, this way those who act up will definitely get the message. What I witnessed yesterday was a disgrace to handball & PHA should NOT be proud to have a winner like that representing! We all must stick together when dealing with such individuals at events. Give them their money back & let them go on their way because we don’t need that type of conduct. I am proud that the game has grown all over the world & it’s up to us to make it right from this point on because WE ARE THE BEST IN THE WORLD (NYC).
Bronx Handball Legend, Roland Brown
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Han & Chris of P.H.A (Pro Handball Alliance)
P.H.A. referee Glen Usher
Pro big ball athletes spectate (from left) Gladys Miranda, “Pee Wee” Castro, Allan Sanchez
Bronx Handball Legend “Web” & Top Professional Timothy “Timbo” Gonzalez
Van Courtland Park, Bronx, New York, USA
P.H.A. “B” (amateur division) Singles
Players & Spectators
Lefty Anthony vs “Smiley”
Alexis vs “Ponytail” Will
Congratulations to the Pro Handball Alliance on a successful event!