// you’re reading...

How to Win

Mariano Rivera and True Greatness

Sport columnist Joel Sherman makes the key point about Yankees reliever Mariano Rivera.

Writing in The New York Post after Rivera tore his ACL in a freak pre-game accident, Sherman says the relief pitcher is more than just a baseball player. He is the embodiment of greatness, not in the cheap, hero-a-day way so common today, but the kind who transforms his part of the world.

Sherman even uses the word “nobility” to describe Rivera, and he’s not wrong. Rivera has survived two decades in the New York spotlight without any hint of  blemish. He never did anything you wouldn’t want your children to see. He never brought embarrassment to  himself, his team or his profession. In Rivera, you are talking about a special kind of person.

And when that person can be the very best in the world at his job, you have someone who inspires reverence from teammates and opponents alike. In my book “The Improvement Factor: How Winners Turn Practice into Success,” there is a chapter on staying on guard against the self. The secret lies in four words: respect, humility, curiosity and hunger. Those words apply to Rivera. As Coach John Wooden said, “Talent can get you to the top, but character keeps you there.”

It doesn’t matter whether you like the Yankees or not. Any time you can see greatness, you want to look, appreciate and study. For instance, Sherman writes, “I would dare say I have never heard an opponent speak badly of Rivera.”

That in itself might be a bigger feat than all of Rivera’s saves.

*** *** *** ***

Would you like to improve at what you do? “The Improvement Factor: How Winners Turn Practice into Success” can show you how! Are you a coach? “Ten Things Great Coaches Know” can make you a better one.


No comments for “Mariano Rivera and True Greatness”

Post a comment