All I needed to do to put the media out of our misery was sink a free throw — just like No. 12 had as a teen to win the Kearns South Stake championship for the 25th Ward.
Knowing what was at stake (not that stake), I toed the charity stripe, bounced the ball and paid homage to Hornacek with a reenactment of his famous face-touching free-throw-line tribute.
Well, until I missed the rim, the net and barely ticked the backboard with one of the worst shots of the day.
Then we ran again while the coaches laughed.
"If you're going to do it," Hornacek told me, "you've got to do it right."
For starters, he explained, I swiped my cheek far too late in the process. My form lacked rhythm. He didn't mention it, but aim and touch would've been nice, too.
"Go for the make, not the humor," Corbin advised me.
Another lesson learned now that my body — from the extra junk in my trunk to my right shooting elbow — remains sore as I type?
Stick to writing about other people's shots.
(Like the splendid shot KSL.com's Graydon Johns made to earn him MVP honors for mercifully ending our sprint session.)
After all of the fun, I asked Corbin for a once-in-a-lifetime assessment of my basketball skills.
Validation from a pro's pro could be the moment of redemption this chubby 5-foot-8 guy has waited for since being a first-cut casualty at Kearns Junior High basketball tryouts in 1985.
"You know what?" Corbin said. "I think you have a great love for the game."
Professional compliment appreciated.
And, honestly, I've come to grips knowing that this writer's game is better on paper.
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