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© 2017 Tamika Catchings

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Flying Home on top of the World

Carol Callan and I my first year with USA Basketball in 1996
Carol Callan and I my first year with USA Basketball in 1996

I’d like to start my blog with a quick shout out to Carol Callan on 20 years with USA Basketball. It’s amazing to think of all of the good times that we’ve shared over the years. You have become an amazing friend, mentor and part of my fam through my years with USA Ball. Thank you for believing in USA Basketball and for dedicating so much to it throughout the years. You are… simply amazing!! #CarolTurns20

Well, my India trip is coming to an end, and all I can say is “Wow, wow, wow.” I didn’t really know what to expect on my journey to Mumbai and Chennai, but I feel a sense of sadness leaving knowing that more work needs to be done, BUT the Jr. NBA/ Reliance Foundation basketball program has come so far.

Great time in Chennai : ) This is only a 1/4 of the kids we served

I’ve had a blast working with the kids and coaches here in Chennai. It’s always amazing when you can feel the passion pouring from the kids, and you can sense the eagerness they have to learn. So amazing!! We did interviews, indulged in Indian food, hosted clinics and talked to a lot of kids and parents in between. It was all summed up during my Q and A time with the kids when he didn’t have a question, but wanted to make a statement. He said, “I’m a football (aka soccer) player, and one day while I was at practice I looked over and saw some kids playing basketball. Then I heard about this Jr. NBA/ Reliance Foundation program, and I wanted to get involved. So I tried out basketball, and now I love it. It’s not just about basketball, it’s about working together and building confidence.” I don’t know how old he was, but I was so proud of him for standing up and sharing his short testimony.

Signing autographs for the kids after one of the clinics

What I continue to learn as I travel from country to country, state to state, city to city is how universal this round ball is. All across the world young kids, boys and girls, are picking it up and bouncing it around not even realizing the impact that it has on their all around lives. Such an inspiration to me to be a pioneer in the WNBA to help provide an opportunity for these young people to live their dreams too.

Got to hang with this awesome guy and his wife. So amazing! Thanks Carlos and Sandra!

I wake up every day thanking God for the opportunity to do what I love and share it with my family, friends, fans and people across the world- young and old. Each of you inspire me to keep pushing forward and to keep striving for greatness. Thank you, thank you, thank you!!

Can't go without a selfie ; )

I sign off with a list of the interviews they did over here in India. Great interviews with some great people!

- Journey on a Difficult Terrain - http://www.asianage.com/other-sports/journey-difficult-terrain-932

- Journey was tough but totally worth it, says Catchings - http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/sports/nba/top-stories/Journey-was-tough-but-totally-worth-it-says-Catchings/articleshow/46051139.cms

- Tamika Catchings is a Born Champion - http://www.dnaindia.com/sport/report-tamika-catchings-is-a-born-champion-2056425

- Tamika Catchings Out to Catch Indian Stars - http://www.asianage.com/other-sports/tamika-catchings-out-catch-indian-stars-853

- India Bound – http://tamikacatchings.sportsblog.com/posts/1699242/india_bound____.html

- Dribbling Interest in India - http://www.newindianexpress.com/cities/chennai/Dribbling-Interest-in-Basketball/2015/02/02/article2647579.ece

Well, I missed Super Bowl Sunday on my trek stateside, but I heard the New England Pats won the game!! Of course my feelings are bittersweet because I wish it was my Colts, but, I still want to extend a Congrats… Colts will be back sooner than later ; ) Safe Monday all, and I’ll see you in Indy!!

Best wishes and God Bless!

TC24

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