Former NBA pro coaches next generation of athletes

Though he’s no longer in the NBA, Chris Dudley is still scoring points on the basketball court.

Now retired, Dudley is a 16-year veteran of the game. But on Saturday, Jan. 23, he suited up to pass along advice and pointers during a free basketball clinic for youth at San Diego’s Municipal Gym. It’s a partnership between the City of San Diego and A-List Basketball Academy.

“We’re working on the fundamentals of basketball, working on the skills, dribbling, passing, shooting. We’re going to play some games and have some fun,” said Dudley.

While it’s basketball today, the Park and Recreation Department is able to host free youth clinics in various sports, thanks to a grant from the NFL Play 60 program, a curriculum teaches educators and children to integrate health and fitness into daily classroom lessons.

“Currently we’re in basketball season but we’ll be moving into soccer and also volleyball, and we’ll have clinics that we’ll offer free of charge” said Manuel Gonzalez, District Manager of San Diego’s Park and Recreation Department.

Twelve-year-old NBA hopeful Kobe Banks was thankful for the opportunity to learn from a pro.

“I thought it was really good because you got to learn from a former NBA player, cause you know he’s doing the right things, because he did them before and he already went through the process,” said Banks.

Dudley’s biggest tip of the day may take a little longer for these kids to learn, but it’s something he hopes they remember.

“Be great at something, whatever that may be,” said Dudley. “Find your passion, find your strength, and follow your passion.”

Registration for spring recreational activities begins Saturday, February 20. Find more information or sign up by visiting SDRecConnect.com.

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