The Kaizen Philosophy in the NBA

Published on 28-Jun-2013 by Towner Park
Basketball - NBA / NBA Daily Review

The Kaizen Philosophy in the NBA

Kaizen?

What?

Let me simplify this philosophy for you.

Kaizen deals strictly with continuous improvement. The idea starts with people who implement a process and find ways to continuously improve and modify that particular process. Your main focus shouldn't be on results. Yes, the process, if continually improved, will yield results, but the focus should be on the process itself. Each and every aspect of said process should be viewed, reviewed, and improved upon. Why do you do this? If a process is continuously improved, you yield better results, which makes you competitive in an ultra aggressive business environment.

Why am I telling you this?

It has come to my attention that Mr Pat Riley and the two-time champion Miami Heat is standing pat. (Sorry about the pun, but it's accurate.)

The preliminary reports have stated that the 'Big Three' will return. As far as the role players, the majority of them will return as well. No pieces to the puzzle will be added. Pat Riley wants to improve from within. Ultimately, this process might be altered because Riley is a cerebral individual with a knack for assessing talent. His résumé speaks for itself. His credentials are impecciable, including the entry about being a five-time NBA champion as a head coach. Obviously, Riley knows basketball, and as team president, he has done a marvelous job creating this current Miami squad.

However, Pat, if you don't make any moves -- if you don't look to improve your team through either free agency or through the draft -- you, my friend, have failed miserably when it comes to remaining competitive in the highly agressive NBA sector.

The Kaizen philosophy applies here. The Miami Heat barely squeaked out a second title. That was with two major roster additions: Ray Allen and Chris 'The Birdman' Anderson. Riley assessed the condition of his team in 2012 and added two pieces that proved effective in the 2013 playoffs. Clearly, without Ray Allen, there would be no second title. So why not follow the same steps in the 2013 offseason?

Miami has obvious flaws. Their point guard play is questionable at times. Chris Bosh isn't a true center by any means. He doesn't bang with the big boys and physically can't do it, what with his slender physique. The Heat need a banger. In order to compete with Indiana and the Spurs, who exposed that weakness, they need to continuously improve their roster.

Do not stand pat, Riley. Your team was manhandled by Tim Duncan and Roy Hibbert. Find someone, either through free agency or the draft, to effectively defend the bigs and rebound like a maniac. Additionally, you can easily  find a savvy veteran point guard to back up Mario Chalmers when he decides to take a mental vacation.

The Kaizen philosophy. It should apply to everyone and everything. Hopefully, Pat Riley utilizes this approach. If he does, the team he constructs this offseason will be better able to defend its title and win a third championship.

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