"According to Director, every member of the club who wants to become a part of the main varsity team has to join the KIEN Tournament!"
Leonard looked at all the members who heard him and understood what it means.
Some even looked worried by the unexpected requirement.
At the back, he saw Gray once again raising his hand.
"What is it?"
Gray seriously spoke and asked, "Which part? As far as I remember, KIEN will conduct 3 tournaments this month at the same time. One, the traditional basketball of 5v5 players playing in a whole court wherein everyone can enter regardless of their age and accomplishments as long as they do not belong to any professional leagues. Two, another 5v5 tournament but for youths. And lastly, the 3x3 half-court tournament..."
While listening to Gray, Leonard is holding his head while his head is fleeting away. He didn't hear it all except for the main parts.
Gray waited for an answer.
At this moment everyone got used to the peculiar behavior of their coach and ignored what is happening.
"Your question? ... Ah, right..."
Leonard saw that everyone is looking at him seriously so he cleared his throat and said.
"You are joining the first tournament with no age limitations."
His words were like a huge bomb dropped in the middle of the Gymnasium. Everyone was blown away, and couldn't believe it.
"Didn't the requirement just jumped up a notch?"
"How will even perform in that?"
"Then, does that mean we might also meet collegiate players?"
The last one who spoke caught everyone's attention. The looked at him as they realized what he had just said.
They looked at Leonard unconsciously.
Leonard saw them and knew what they are thinking.
"That's the requirement. Whether you meet a really good hustler or a good collegiate player, it doesn't really matter."
Fin and Claude looked at Leonard dumbfounded because they understand the difficulty of possibly playing Collegiate players.
Unlike high school basketball, Collegiate basketball is a lot tougher and demanding. There, the experience richer and talents are greater.
This is also the reason why most professionals chose to play in a collegiate first before going professional. It is because collegiate can help them adapt the most to the professional league.
Also, they have once played against a collegiate player before so they know how it feels.
Fin could still remember the pressure he felt from a more experienced player than he is. Although Fin has the moves and athleticism to score, the collegiate player could still keep up to him without special athleticism or great handling skills just experience.
That experience could make a great difference.
Leonard could also understand this but he has to do it not only because of the Director's insistence but also it be a great training material for the club.
At the back, Lance watched what is being in play and saw the ones who did not react. Apart from him, Allan and Nathan seemed to also understand the difficulty but they did not mind it.
'I can tell why Allan does not care about the difficulty. He is simply confident of himself. Nathan, on the other hand... He is usually a loudmouth but when you give him a ball he would appear surprisingly experienced... something that you wouldn't expect to someone like him.'
Suddenly, Leonard clapped his hands and spoke, "Listen up! I will divide you all into 5 groups with at max 10 people each. I have prepared a fishbowl right here- ..."
Everyone noticed Leonard's sudden silence and became curious about what happened. Leonard started to look left and right looking for a fishbowl.
'Where did I put it?'
The coach looked at Claude and cleared his throat. He saw the latter look at him and so he spoke in a quiet voice and whispered.
"Can you go back to the faculty?"
Claude asked, "Why?"
"I forgot the fishbowl."
"Fishbowl? What fishbowl?"
"For the draw!"
Claude frowned and became speechless.
"Where is it?"
"On my table... It should be... I guess..."
Everyone watched the coach and Claude talk but they couldn't hear them as they just whispered to each other.
Suddenly, Claude ran off and left the Gym. Everyone did not know why but they did not ask. They looked at the
A moment later, someone entered the gym with a fishbowl filled with strips of paper. It is not Claude. The student looked around and finally saw Leonard. He was not a part of the club so he did not recognize anyone except for the one who forgot the fishbowl in his hand.
He walked towards Leonard and handed over the fishbowl.
The student spoke, "Sir, I believe you forgot to bring this with you."
Leonard recognized the fishbowl and smiled as this is what he was looking for. He looked at the student and asked, "Where did you find it?"
"You left it in the restroom when you washed your hands, sir."
"Is that so?"
The student nodded. Leonard smiled and thanked the student for returning. When the student left, Leonard looked at the members of the club who are looking at the fishbowl in his hands.
Fin asked first and said, "Sir, what is that?"
Leonard looked at the fishbowl and looked at Fin but he did not reply immediately. He looked at the members in front of him and smiled.
"Here, I have a fishbowl here in my hands. As you can see, there are strips of papers here folded in half. Each one of you will draw a strip and that strip will be the group you'll belong in..."
Leonard explained and watched the member's reaction. Fin just stood behind him and did not speak but he kept his eyes on the fishbowl Leonard is holding.
"... I repeat! There will be 5 teams. Once you drew a team you can't move into another team and the team you drew will be the team you will play within the tournament."
Leonard continued, "Remember, your performance will be recorded and evaluated. So do your best in the competition."
The members began to seriously nod. Leonard looked at them with a smile and handed the fishbowl to Fin. He took his notebook and pen to start recording the draw.
"Fin, you go first."
Fin nodded and drew a strip of paper. He read it and was surprised by the text written on it. He looked at Leonard.
"Is this the team name?"
"... Yes, why?"
'Brittle Bone? What kind of naming sense is that?'
Fin thought for a second while looking at the serious face Leonard showing him. Little did he know that Leonard is actually holding his laughter in.
In the fishbowl, there are many strips of paper and within those strips, five team names are written.
Leonard racked his brain all night to come up with those names. He wanted to make it a joke but he seriously wanted to register those names in the tournament.
Fin sighed and resigned to fate. He does not know what the other team names are but he felt like the team he is included in is not the worse name.
Soon, the seniors began to line up and draw from the fishbowl. Leonard recorded their names under their drawn team and gave a serious face that you would only see when someone's dead serious. Of course, most of the seniors had the same reaction as Fin.
Then, the first years lined up after the seniors drew their teams. Nothing special happened apart from the slight changes in Leonard's face. He is now biting his lips.
When all is done, Leonard tasked them to start training their assigned regime and left them.
Lance looked at the strip of paper that he drew.
And then he looked at his teammates who also found him.
He is familiar with most of his teammates.
There is the 6 foot 11 inches Allan.
The Sharpshooter, Gray.
Athletic short forward, Jonas.
And the loud mouth Nathan.
He also got to know some of the seniors in his team and recognized their strength after being in the club for a week already.
Overall it looked like a solid team that everyone would want to be a part of.
But Lance knows the implications of such a team. Performance is going to be evaluated so for a wise man's perspective, you wouldn't be a part of a group with the likes of Allan who would surely steal all the limelight.
Outside the Gym, Leonard is looking around to see if someone followed him. When he saw that no one is near him, he suddenly burst in laughter. He had been holding it in so he could not help it.
"Oh, it is so hard to hold your laughter in goodness sake! Hehehe..."
"Jolly aren't we?"
Leonard trembled as he realized that he was found out. He turned around and saw his daughter.
"It's you! You scared me for a second there."
Sunshine chuckled and said, "Bad father, you pranked someone again don't you?"
He looked at his daughter and thought, 'It is too many to be someone though, hehe.'
"Well never mind! I'll be going first, you should go back and supervise! You are paid not slack. If you did I will tell mom!"
Leonard looked at his daughter and cleared his throat.
"Don't worry, you should go. Your mother should be looking for you."
Leonard saw his daughter off and returned to the Gym. Fin noticed him and approached him.
"Sir, I think we must forgetting something."
'Where is the fishing bowl, the coach is talking about anyway?'
Claude is staring at Leonard's desk in the faculty the whole time not knowing what to do. He looked around to ask for help.
"Fishing bowl? I don't think I have seen one."
Claude sighed after hearing the old teacher's reply.
'Now, what to do.' He thought.
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