Some of you may remember Eric Dailey Jr, a basketball player for IMG Academy from a previous SPMA feature entitled “Meet The Dailey’s, Basketball Is Our Family”. Eric comes from strong basketball roots. His father, Eric Sr, played professional basketball for 10 years before becoming an accomplished entrepreneur. His mother, Shell, is a former WNBA coach! At our last writing, 15 year old Eric Jr. had secured college offers with his aim set for the NBA. However, unlike many of his peers, Eric was considering opting for a nontraditional path to the NBA and going straight overseas rather than playing in the NCAA. I have been fortunate enough to keep up with his career and when we chatted last he had also secured potential professional offers. Since the global pandemic has put both sports and travel on hold, I reached out to Eric to gain some insight on how COVID-19 is affecting his development, his career, and his plans. Check it out!
Please note: The interview with Eric Dailey Jr was conducted via a typed conversation. Editing changes were made to make it easier to read while maintaining the voice of the interview.
Not a lot of players have the option to go overseas and LaMelo Ball was one that did, but he also had a plan while over there. By buying the team he played for, I am a little interested in how he was able to do so.
I was actually supposed to be going to the Geico High School Nationals in New York, but due to COVID-19, it stopped me and my team’s journey towards winning another national championship. Also, being able to be back at training camp with USA Basketball would have been a great opportunity and most kids would love to have the problem for deciding between the Nationals and USA Basketball training camp!
It’s not really affecting any plans for my future. The situation revolving around COVID-19 and the recommended isolation/social distancing regulations are allowing me to work on my body so when I do play again I would be taller, stronger, and faster.
It would’ve been my first time going to the tournament in New York, but watching what my team did last year and winning I would have loved the opportunity to play and try to win. I’m not worried about my player ranking, I could care less because rankings don’t define a player, only the work on the court does.
I’m very excited to get on the court again. As for seeing my name ahead of familiar faces, it is a testimony to all of the hard work that I have put in over the last few years.
It’s a time to reconnect with my family and enjoy their company because we was always moving around, as well as giving me the freedom to work on my conditioning.
I am ready to play again. I always wanted to see what the hype was about, but now people are talking about me I want to play against the top players in my class.
There’s no surprise that Eric Dailey Jr is itching to get back on the court; however, it’s great to see that he is making the most of the mandatory time off. Taking a break to recharge both mentally and physically is a blessing. It’s incredible just how mature and focused Eric Jr is at such a young age. It’s always a pleasure to get to speak with the rising star, and I can’t wait to see what the future has in store for him and his career after the pandemic allows the world to return to normal.