Martin Bahar on Diversity of Thought

August 9, 2017

This week's podcast was with a longtime friend, Martin Bahar. We went to elementary school and grew up playing sports together. Martin has always been someone who valued hard work and improvement. As a kid, every year he got better and better at basketball. Today, he is a charismatic guy who can connect with just about anyone.

Martin is an assistant coach with the men's basketball team at the University of Southern California. Martin has been coaching for over a decade and his coaching journey has taken him all over the country. Because I am in the basketball community, I am constantly meeting people who know and love Martin. He's a special guy.

In this conversation, we talk about building relationships, dealing with distractions, and team culture. Martin is also a great follow on Twitter: @MShoneBahar. Lastly, Martin is very involved with the Leukemia Lymphoma society where he raises money in honor of his late sister (Maddie). Thanks so much to Martin for coming on!


Dave Smith on Learning Leadership

August 2, 2017

Today we go beyond the surface with Dave Smith. Dave was the Canisius College men's ice hockey coach for 12 seasons. At Canisius, he built the Men's Ice Hockey program to a number 25 ranking among Division I NCAA Men's Ice Hockey teams. Dave guided Canisius to a 21-11-7 record this season and was named the Atlantic Hockey Coach of the Year after winning the program's first regular-season title. He led the Golden Griffins to three straight trips to Atlantic Hockey Championship weekend for the first time in school history, including consecutive appearances in the title game and the team's first crown in 2013. The program has also received national attention with its graduates having unprecedented success at the professional level.

Dave recently took the job at RPI and this episode will give you great insight into what he values, looks for, and hopes to build at RPI. Dave also had a long professional hockey career which took him all over North America. Dave and I talk about mindset, leadership, growing and developing.

You can learn more about Dave and the RPI hockey team by following him on Twitter: @RPI_hcky_Coach.




Joanna Lohman on My Authentic Self

July 26, 2017

Today we go beyond the surface with Joanna Lohman. Joanna is a professional soccer player with the Washington Spirit. Lohman was captain of the Penn State Nittany Lions from 2002–2003 and was the first four-time First Team All-Big Ten selection in the school's history. She earned a 3.98 GPA while obtaining her business degree at Penn State, resulting in her also being a four-time Academic All-American. In 2004, she was named Pennsylvania's NCAA Woman of the Year.

Joanna also helped launch an organization called GO! Athletes that aims encourage schools to create safer spaces for lesbian, gay, transgender, bisexual and questioning athletes.

Joanna is Vice President of Tenant Consulting, LLC, a commercial real estate firm in the Washington DC area. She helped create the first "carbon neutral calculator" for office buildings, resulting in an invitation to meet former Vice President Al Gore.

As you will hear, Joanna is extremely thoughtful and passionate about her professiona career. She believes in serving others by inspiring them to be the best version of themselves.  I also recommend giving Joanna a follow on twitter: @JoannaLohman.

Thanks so much to Joanna for coming on the show!






Darris Nichols on Blue Collared Work

July 19, 2017

Today I go beyond the surface with Darris Nichols. Darris is an assistant coach with University of Florida Men's basketball. Darris has also coached at many other schools. Before coaching, he was a standout guard at West Virginia Universit where he was a four-year letterwinner under legendary coaches, Bob Huggins and John Beilien. 

Nichols, a native of Radford, Va., shined as a player in the Big East. He scored 993 career points and dished 399 assists while shooting at a .375 clip from 3-point range. He averaged 10.7 points per game as well as 3.2 assists per game as a senior on the way to WVU’s Sweet 16 run. He was also a member of the 2007 NIT Championship, 2006 Sweet 16 and 2005 Elite Eight teams and finished his collegiate career as a top five most winningest player in Mountaineer history.

As you will hear, Darris has been greatly impacted by people in his life who worked hard and he takes that work-ethic with him as a coach. He also values relationships and the ability to connect with the players he serves. Darris is adaptable, warm, humble, and extremely intentional with his decision making.

Darris is a great follow on twitter: @CoachNice14.  Thanks to Darris for coming on the show.


Ethan Zohn from Surviving to Thriving

July 12, 2017

Today we go beyond the surface with Ethan Zohn. Ethan has many chapters in his story. He played professional soccer, won $1,000,000 on the hit TV show Survivor, and is a cancer survivor, or thriver as we discuss in this episode.

Ethan’s journey starts in the Northeast but has taken him all over the world. One of the places that has had a big influence on his life is Afirca, as he spent time there as a professional soccer player and a competitor on Survivor. That time inspired him to co-found Grassroots Soccer, who’s mission is to "mobilize the global soccer community to combat the AIDS epidemic in Africa.”

Ethan will discuss how his experiences have greatly impacted how he sees the world and given him tremendous purpose in his life. Thanks to Ethan for being so vulnerable, especially with a stranger, and sharing your journey.  If you want to follow Ethan on Twitter feel free to do so @EthanZohn and check out all the great work Grassroots Soccer is doing


Maggie Lucas on Never Quitting

July 5, 2017

Today we go beyond the surface with Maggie Lucas. Maggie is a professional basketball player for the Indiana Fever of the Women’s National Basketball Association (WNBA). Maggie also attended Penn State University where she was 2X Big Ten Player of the year and an All-American.

While Maggie has certainly had an accomplished career, in this episode she will also talk about some of the challenges she has faced along the way. Maggie has torn her ACL twice since becoming a pro and has had to develop a tremendous mindset to deal with that adversity. Maggie will also talk about how her mindset has changed through the years.

Thanks so much to Maggie for coming on and if you want to learn more about her feel free to follow her on Twitter @MaggieLucas33.


Laron Profit on Lifelong Learning

June 27, 2017

Laron Profit played professional basketball for over 10 years. He played for the Washington Wizards and Los Angeles Lakers and also played for teams all over the world. Laron was fortunate to have his career journey cross paths with two of the most mentally strong athletes of all-time: Michael Jordan and Kobe Bryant. After finishing his career he went on to coach with the Orlando Magic for a number of years before making the decision to get out of coaching to take a job with the Jordan Brand clothing company. At Jordan Brand Laron works hand in hand with some of the greatest athletes in both basketball and football.

Laron is an extremely thoughtful guy. During this episode he will talk about his journey, what he learned along the way, and how he continues to develop his mindset every day. We talk about the importance of self-talk, interpretation, and preparation. I know you will enjoy Laron’s perspective

If you want to follow Laron on Twitter you can do so @Profit4eva. But, full disclosure, Laron said he checks it sparingly!


Jesse Itzler on Going For It

June 20, 2017

Jesse Itzler wears many hats. He’s a former rapper, entrepreneur, and author. As a rapper he reached #74 on the billboard top 100, he wrote the NY Knicks theme song “Go NY Go”, and has written and produced songs for a number of companies. As an entrepreneur he co-founded Marquis jets which was later acquired by NetJets, he partnered with Coconut Water company, Zico which he helped sell to Coca Cola. Jesse is also a co-owner of the Atlanta Hawks.

As an author he wrote a New York Times bestselling book called Living with a Seal: 31 Days Training With the Toughest Man on the Planet. I read the book and found it to be funny, inspirational, and just terrific story-telling. I highly recommend it. Jesse is a high energy guy who is a person of action. He is obsessed with fitness and completed an Ultra Marathon competition where he completed 100 miles run in 24 hours.

If you want to learn more about Jesse you can follow him on Twitter: @the100MileMan. Jesse also has a terrific Facebook group that challenges people to push their fitness limits called: we do hard stuff.

Thanks so much to Jesse for coming on.


Adrianne Haslet on Resilient Dancing

June 13, 2017

Adrianne Haslet's life changed on April 15th, 2013. As Adrianne watched the Boston Marathon participants finish their grueling 26.2 miles she heard an explosion and her life was forever changed. Adrianne lost her leg that day. The leg that she had relied on to become one of the best dancers in the world. Her life was forever changed.

In this conversation we unpack that faithful day, but much of our conversation is about the rest of Adrianne's life. Who she is. Who she was. And who she is constantly aspiring to be. Adrianne's willingness to make herself vulnerable leads to conversations about her battles with perfectionism, post traumatic stress, and the everyday challenges of living with a prosthetic leg.

This conversation is really about a strong, independent, constantly evolving, curious, and driven woman, who aspires to be successful at whatever she does. Adrianne values challenges and inspires through her actions. She is honest and brave, and flawed like all of us. Thanks to Adrianne for coming on the podcast and sharing her journey with a stranger.  Definitely give Adrianne a follow on Twitter: @AdrianneHaslet.




Hernando Planells on The Unique Journey

June 6, 2017

Today we go beyond the surface with Hernando Planells. Hernando is the associate head coach with Duke University's women's baskebtall team. Hernando's journey is anything but linear. Basketball has taken him all over the world and his entrepreneurial spirit can be heard throughout our conversation. Hernando is not just a coach. He also has a company that puts on workshops to develop leadership, communication, and culture, predominantly by using improv. You can also check out his podcast here. Lastly, he's a great follow on Twitter @hernandojr.

Planells has one of the most diverse backgrounds in basketball in both coaching and player development. He has coached at every level including a stint with the Maine Red Claws from 2010-11 of the NBA Development League. As an assistant coach, he was in charge of player development, scouting and did on-court coaching. He helped develop Boston Celtics No. 1 draft pick Avery Bradley and NBA D-League Rookie of the Year DeShawn Sims. Planells has also spoken at coaching clinics and conducts player development camps all over the United States and in countries such as Japan, Philippines, Australia, Switzerland and Taiwan. In 2011, he founded ELITE athlete training, which specialized in personal training and consulting services for athletes. Through his work with ELITE, he trained and assisted over 100 athletes reach their goal of gaining a college scholarship or playing professionally.

From 2005-10, Planells served as a scout for Marty Blake, who is the Director of Scouting for the NBA. In his role as a scout, Planells put together scouting reports evaluating NBA prospects which were circulated to every NBA general manager and player personnel director.

In 2008, Planells returned to the United States after serving as head coach of the Ryukyu Golden Kings, an expansion team that is a part of the BJ League (Basketball Japan). For the 2006-07 season, he served as the head basketball coach for The Hollywood Fame, a team that participated in the American Basketball Association (ABA).

In 2005, Planells was named the first head coach of the Wyoming Golden Eagles out of the All-American Professional Basketball League. At that time, the 28-year-old was the youngest professional basketball coach in the country.

From 2003-05, Planells served as the assistant coach in charge of offense for Citrus College, one of the top community colleges in the state of California. Other coaching stops include a stint as the head varsity coach at Los Angeles High School (1998-2000), Immaculate Heart High School (1996-97) in Tucson, Ariz., and as an assistant at Monrovia High School (1995-96).

Thanks to Hernando for coming on the podcast.