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Langara basketball team reveals their pre-game rituals

Superstitions and rituals are not rare in the world of sports and Langara Falcons have their own.

Yoel Teclehaimanot, guard for the Langara Falcons men's basketball team, watches the training scenes from the “Rocky” movie series before his games in order to help him focus for competition. Photo: Nick Valka.
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Reported by Perrin Grauer

Bizarre superstitions and rituals are not limited to teams from far-away countries like Kazakhstan’s Shakhter Karagandy, once warned by European soccer’s government body to stop their sacrifice of sheep at competition arenas. Nor is it restricted to large North American team sports like the NFL, where the Jacksonville Jaguars John Henderson purportedly has his assistant team trainer slap him as hard as he can with an open hand before games.

Indeed, the Langara Falcons basketball teams have their own unusual ways of ensuring their victories.

Men’s guard Ravi Basra, for instance, said he watches clips of ex-Los Angeles Lakers shooting guard Kobe Bryant before every game.

“I usually watch his 62-point game against Dallas, where he scored 62 in just three quarters, didn’t even play the fourth.” Basra said. “It’s all mental at the end of the day, so whatever helps you, I try to lean towards that. Whatever helps or gets us winning.”

Men’s coach Paul Eberhardt said as long as the habits of his players don’t interfere with their performance, he’s all for them.

“I think superstitions are actually beneficial if the person believes that they are,” Eberhardt said, adding he has yet to encounter a superstition so weird he couldn’t endorse it. “If it gets him in the right mental framework, then I’m fine with that.”

Women’s forward Haylee Robertson said once she’s lost a game in a pair of socks, she never wears them again.

“It sucks because you usually put your nice socks on, too, for game day,” Robertson said with a laugh. “So it’s a motive not to lose if you don’t want to retire your socks.”

Men’s forward Yoel Teclehaimanot said he watches the Rocky film series.

“If we have a game this week I’ll watch Rocky I, and the next game I’ll do the second one, and so on,” Teclehaimanot said. “I’ll just keep repeating that throughout the whole season.”

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