How Important Are Pre-Game Rituals for a Team?

Posted on Mon, Apr 08, 2013


pre game rituals, d wade, mission athletecare


Success in professional basketball is a product of immense preparation.  One important aspect of preparing for a game is the concept of “pre-game rituals”, or the routine a player goes through in the time immediately leading up to a game. Not to be confused with locker room superstitions, this routine that a player goes through not only makes for a great show for spectators, but also helps players to become both physically and mentally prepared prior to game time.


There are a variety of customs that players in the NBA today go through just prior to gametime.  Although the league recently implemented a new rule requiring starters to be on the court within 90 seconds of lineup introductions, there is still ample time for players to get into their mental and physical comfort zones.  Dwyane Wade recently outlined his pre-game ritual here, which includes a “chin-up” on the rim (pictured) www.youtube.com/watch?v=JTy9dAuE1pA


Perhaps the most well known pre-game ritual is associated with the league’s most well known player: Lebron James.  At the conclusion of introductions, James heads straight to the scorers’ table and powders up his hands.  He then lets the powder fly into the air, almost always eliciting a massive reaction from the crowd.  Some players are also now using a newer product called Mission Power Grip, which is a “liquid chalk” that they apply to their hands for a “dry grip” on the ball.


Right before tip off or when checking in, some players will step on a sticky mat to clean the bottoms of their shoes and more and more players are now applying Mission Court Grip to their sneakers for enhanced traction.


Another popular pregame ritual amongst NBA players is the handshake.  Many players have developed intricate handshakes with one another.  Sometimes these handshakes go beyond just player-to-player, expanding to coaches and even to the officials at the scorers’ table.  The Oklahoma City Thunder are the team most well-known for these theatrics. www.youtube.com/watch?v=k6QlkghHHsA  


Other players have specific shot routines that they go through, always making sure they take a certain amount of warm-up shots at certain areas of the floor.  Some players must touch certain areas of the floor in their warm-up.


However, some routines, like that of the injured Boston Celtics star Rajon Rondo, become a bit more complicated.  According to teammate Jason Terry, Rondo’s pre-game routine includes high-fiving the whole team, partaking in layup lines for five minutes, before finally “stand(ing) under the goal and Paul Pierce will shoot every ball on the rack from half court. He will catch four balls at one time and then after that…one pass off the backboard to KG, one bounce pass to Paul Pierce and then he throws it all the way up to the scoreboard and Jeff Green finishes with an alley-oop.”


Ultimately, pre-game rituals have become an essential part of the pre-performance routine and allow players to feel comfortable and ready to take on their opponent.  In addition, it is the time when players apply their “tools of the game” that will help them perform to their potential.


So….what is the craziest pre-game ritual YOU have seen at any level, NBA, College, High School, etc.?



Mission Court Grip Improves On-Court Lateral Quickness by 24%!

Posted on Thu, Oct 18, 2012


In sports, a millisecond or millimeter can be the difference between a win or a loss…

Looking to make a difference in your game this basketball season?  Check this out…

Today, we released findings from an independent three month study that showed a 24% average improvement on basketball player’s lateral quickness and improved balance and stability when using Court Grip™!

The company who did the study was OptoSource™, a recognized leader in sports performance tracking, utilizing state-of-the-art LED sensors to track and measure athlete’s speed, agility and quickness to determine their efficiency of motion. 

Once they reviewed their preliminary findings,  OptoSource™ traveled to Wisconsin to test with Milwaukee Bucks star point guard Brandon Jennings, and to analyze the difference in his signature step back jump shot with and without Court Grip™. 

From Brandon himself: “I used Court Grip all of last year, and I could feel the difference in my game, but actually seeing the data from the study, the visible improvements that Court Grip made to my form, stability and performance was really amazing.”

Check out the video that breaks down the findings:


Co-developed and co-created with 2-Time NBA Champion and Miami Heat All-Star Dwyane Wade, we launched Court Grip™ last season, with support from company partners Steve Nash, Dwight Howard and Brandon Jennings as well as the NBA and the NBA Trainers Association. Due to record-breaking adoption of the product, all major sports retailers are featuring Court Grip ™ this basketball season.

Use promo code FREECGSHIP to get free shipping here on all orders.



Mission Athletecare Announces Partnership with NBA

Posted on Wed, Dec 21, 2011

MISSION Brandon Jennings PHOTO

As if the return of the basketball season wasn't enough good news, we've got more. Yesterday, as many news outlets reported, we announced that Mission is now the "Official Athletecare" partner of the NBA. 

Some of the NBA's biggest stars signed on with Mission this fall and launched our two NBA branded products - Court Grip and Power Grip. Dwyane Wade of the Miami Heat started off the Court Grip launch in New York. Brandon Jennings of the Milwaukee Bucks joined the team two weeks later as he promoted Court Grip on the West Coast. The second of our NBA products, Power Grip, which instantly dries hands for better ball control, was launched by the New York Knicks' Carmelo Anthony in the Big Apple. When the season kicks off on Christmas Day, both Court Grip and Power Grip will not only be on the scorer's tables of their teams, but available to all players at all games.

This news follows the NBATA's (National Basketball Athlete Trainers Association) unanimous approval of Court Grip. After extensive in-game testing across all levels of competition, it is the "Official Traction Provider" of the NBATA. Following this announcement Casey Smith, the Chairman of the NBATA, commented: “Maintaining traction on courts is an issue for players and Court Grip addresses the problem better than anything we've ever used. We’re pleased to have helped bring this game-changing product to market.”

With the season set to begin in one week, we are more than excited to see our products in action with the League's greatest players. It is a momentous step for Mission as a company and we're looking forward to the continued challenge of creating innovative products that address athlete-specific needs.

We can't wait for Christmas.

Both Court Grip and Power Grip are available exclusively in stores at Foot Locker and online at eastbay.com.

Mission Basketball's Fall Run

Posted on Wed, Nov 02, 2011

With over 30 million basketball players in the United States, it’s only right that Mission Basketball’s latest launch was bi-coastal. On October 13th in the Big Apple, New York's hometown hero and league All-Star Carmelo Anthony released our newest product, POWER GRIP™. Across the country the day before, Brandon Jennings, California native and Milwaukee's young PG, officially joined Mission and the COURT GRIP™ team during a launch in the City of Angels. Just two short weeks removed from Dwyane Wade’s official unveiling of COURT GRIP™, our team is looking pretty good.

Since Wade's release, it has been exciting to watch how quickly COURT GRIP™ has caught on throughout the basketball community. From Jim Boeheim's legendary program at Syracuse (Melo's alma mater) to courts around the country, basketball players have been gripping and gaming. You can hear for yourself as Coach Boeheim attests that COURT GRIP™ is his go-to as a top-tier college program.

Other members of the COURT GRIP™ team have been spreading the word, too. During Brandon Jennings’ chat on Sports Nation, he wrote that he was using COURT GRIP™ during his time playing at the Pan Am Games. Dwyane Wade was photographed gripping at the FIU charity game hosted by Isiah Thomas. With basketball season on the horizon, players across the country are racing to Foot Locker stores and eastbay.com to grab some GRIP.

The inaugural COURT GRIP season starts soon; stay with us on Facebook and Twitter. There will undoubtedly be more news to come.

Mission Athletecare™ & Dwyane Wade Launch COURT GRIP™

Posted on Tue, Oct 04, 2011

This past February, Dwyane Wade signed on as a partner. It doesn’t seem like too long ago, but since then a lot has happened at Mission. Of note, last week’s hugely successful launch of Wade and Mission Basketball’s newest product, COURT GRIP™. The day started early at Fox and Friends and ended late at Jimmy Fallon, complete with stops for the New York Times and ESPN (among others) in between. After all of that, basketball may never be the same. We have everyone at COURT GRIP™ - from D-Wade to the engineers who literally created the winning formula - to thank.

Mission Court GripAs you know if you’ve followed the trajectory of Mission Athletecare™, we have a unique business model. We believe that in order to improve sports, you’ve got to start small and dream big. We also believe that in order to meet the expectations we set, it is imperative to involve people who are most familiar with the sport at hand - players. Take our newest endeavor: Mission Basketball. The problem of court traction has been around since Springfield. As halftime shows and multi-purpose arenas have grown more and more popular, court conditions have taken a backseat - something that basketball players the world over have noticed. After committing to solve this problem, we went straight to the courts and and were thrilled when the dynamic Dwyane Wade signed on as a company partner. 

We know that game changers are rare, but believe COURT GRIP™ can change the game of basketball from the ground up. So does D-Wade, so does legendary coach Jim Boeheim, and so do the AAU players who helped in product testing. Everyday we’re hearing back from some of the 30 million basketball players in the United States who are trying COURT GRIP™ on their home courts, and we hope to hear from you too. We mean that. Much of Mission’s success can be attributed to the collaborative process behind the development of our products. Join the grip revolution at the Mission Basketball Facebook page or follow @CourtGrip to stay with us. There’s a lot more to come.

COURT GRIP™ is available now from Eastbay.com and Foot Locker!