Pascal Siakam Wing Player

How To Be A Good Wing Player In Basketball (and Play Like Pascal Siakam)

To be a good wing player, you need to be a basketball jack-of-all-trades. Here’s how Pascal Siakam developed a well-rounded game and how you can, too.

Pascal Siakam’s career took a turn for the better during the 2019 NBA Finals.

During the regular season of that campaign, there were flashes that he was going to be something special. But it wasn’t until the Finals, where he truly shined.

He played at a high level and was the second option behind Kawhi Leonard. He did a bit of everything and there were times when the Toronto Raptors relied on him to produce.

Needless to say, Siakam accomplished a lot this season –he was named the Most Improved Player of the Year and also won an NBA championship.

As a result, he gained confidence and carried that swagger with him into the following NBA season, where he assumed a leadership role in the franchise and also became an All-Star for the first time.

His numbers improved abundantly from the previous season and he was viewed as one of the best forwards to play that year.

Analysts and fans alike even wondered how much more he can progress because he was playing at such a high level.

That’s pretty big praise for a guy who didn’t start playing basketball until he was in his late teens.

Most people who want to play in the NBA start their training at a young age… like, when they can barely hold onto the ball.

But Siakam’s story is completely different.

He didn’t really start developing his game until he was an old teen. As a matter of fact, he was almost an adult.

How Did Siakam Become a Good Wing Player?

So, how did he obtain so many skills? How is Siakam so versatile? How is he a complete wing player?

Well, it’s because he wanted to be different and didn’t want to be a traditional big. Thus, he studied players who had size but were able to do a lot of things on the court.

For example, Siakam wanted to be able to handle the ball.

So, he studied the likes of Tracy McGrady and Kevin Durant -tall wings that can dribble in a variety of ways, he said on The Old Man and The Three:

He also put in a lot of work. After honing his fundamental big man skills, he started to work on his wing player skills (or “guard stuff”).

He believed he had the mobility to do a lot of moves, so he developed a floater, and a spin move, and such.

Via Sportsnet:

“I’m just continuing to trust my work — it’s happening naturally,” he says. “I never saw myself as this big dude that was just posting up. I always liked guard stuff. I always liked to be mobile. I always wanted to handle the ball. And I work on that stuff a lot. All summer, all season. If I’m going to work on something that much, I’m going to do it in the game. I mean, why not?”

Siakam’s meteoric progression was a result of him being intrigued, experimenting with different skills, and working hard to master them.

And because of his curiosity, he developed a versatile skill set that has made him one of the best wings in the NBA.

Siakam can direct plays, operate from the triple-threat, score from inside the perimeter and out, and defend almost every position.

How You Can Be A Good Wing Player

So, how can you be a good wing player like him?

Well, you have to master the fundamentals first. This will provide you with the base skills to be a versatile player.

You have to work on your shooting, ball-handling, passing, slashing, rebounding, and defence.

You can learn how to do all of these skills here.

Once you do that, then you can start learning and developing skills that intrigue you.

Doing it this way will make it easier for you to pick up the new (and more difficult) skills because you’ll already have the basic footwork and skills down. You’ll just be layering new skills on top of the base.

Final Thoughts

Pascal Siakam is a basketball Swiss Army knife.

He can do so many things and do them well.

But the only reason why he was able to develop all those skills is that he had an understanding of the fundamentals and he was curious.

Thus, if you want to be a well-rounded player like Siakam, you have to start honing your fundamentals and start experimenting with different skills (once you can do all of the basic stuff well that is).


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