As COVID-19 continues to quarantine people and postpone team sports at all levels, Goodyear Millennium boys basketball head coach Ty Amundsen is supporting his friend and Lakers assistant coach Phil Handy in developing basketball players’ skills online.
Handy launched his own player skills training website called 94FEETOFGAME in 2017 and developed its complementary mobile app in 2019.
The title refers to the 94-foot regulatory length of a basketball court and it’s for elementary school to professional players.
According to Handy’s philosophy written on the website, the app’s purpose if for “use by any player who wants to improve and become complete. The focus is on instructing basketball players on how to be skilled, crafty and fundamentally sound,” and “to provide the best training program to fully meet the instructional needs of all coaches, trainers and players.”
“He’s been doing this app and I’ve been messaging with him back and forth through text messages wanting to know more about the app,” Amundsen said.
Amundsen and Handy have known each other since their teenage years playing in their native Bay Area of California high school basketball circuit.
Handy played and graduated from Hawaii and Amundsen played and graduated from Fresno Pacific in 1995.
They kept in touch throughout the years since then, updating each other about Amundsen’s path as a high school basketball coach and Handy’s own in the NBA.
Handy has won two championships as an assistant coach for the Cleveland Cavaliers and Toronto Raptors, has coached in several NBA Finals and is currently an assistant coach for the Los Angeles Lakers.
His player skills training resume include NBA All-Stars LeBron James, Kawhi Leonard, Anthony Davis, Kyrie Irving, and former stars Dwyane Wade and the late Kobe Bryant.
“It started out with me asking him to come and do a basketball camp for me at Millennium,” Amundsen said. “In that conversation, I had been talking about how we have this club team, the Millennium team, and wanting Phil Handy to train DaRon Holmes.”
Because of the government’s social distancing requirements and lockdown of Arizona high school campuses and gyms across the state, and across most of the country, Amundsen has shut down the AZ Battle youth club team schedule for this spring and upcoming summer.
Also, his request for Handy to train Millennium’s junior forward Holmes, the Arizona Gatorade Player of the Year, isn’t possible because of the ongoing health and safety concerns.
But Amundsen finds this moment of uncertainty as an ample opportunity for his Millennium and AZ Battle teams, other coaches and other players in Arizona to use the app and embody Handy’s trademarked motto to “be your own GOAT” by training on their own.
All they need is a ball and a hoop to get it done without worrying about catching the coronavirus from playing against others who may have contracted the illness.
The app offers daily drills for stationary and open-court breakdown ball-handling, shooting, finishing, low post moves, pick-and-roll plays and instructional videos featuring former Phoenix Suns great Steve Nash and Sacramento Kings forward Harrison Barnes.
It also contains workouts for home strength and conditioning, speed and agility in footwork.
94FEETOFGAME has a seven-day free trial period and costs $9.99 per month.
“The app is doing very well in the top 100 of all sports apps worldwide (among) over two million sports apps,” Handy said via text.
Los Angeles Lakers assistant coach Phil Handy details his mission in the introductory video of his 94FEETOFGAME basketball training mobile app.
Amundsen and Handy created a exclusive promotional code for Arizona-based users so they can monitor how many have downloaded the app.
“I told him I want to grab that app because a lot of people are asking me to train kids and I said that I just don’t have enough time,” Amundsen said. “Then all of a sudden, the coronavirus stuff started to kick in and people were getting ‘stay at home’ type of stuff.
“I said, ‘Phil, this is the best time to get this app out.’ I’m respecting the social distancing part of it and said let’s get this app out to my guys. This app is perfect for what’s going on right now.”
Amundsen is promoting the app’s services to over 300 coaches and players in his email distribution list.
“It makes you think about the game, too, because basketball is really a thinking game,” Amundsen said. “If you work hard and really push yourself, this app can help you with that.”
Support local journalism. Start your online subscription today.