Count John Lucas among the many people offering advice to Tennessee’s Cierra Burdick as she tried to shake off an extended shooting slump this season and revive her outlook on basketball.
Lucas is a former NBA player and coach based in Houston. He conducts camps and clinics and has developed drug treatment programs tailored for athletes.
“A family friend played tennis and basketball with him in high school,” Burdick said. “I got connected with him this summer and went down to Houston to work out with him. He’s just a great guy. I think he helped me a lot on the court but even more so off the court.”
Tennessee’s Cierra Burdick scored 16 points, grabbed seven rebounds and dished out four assists Thursday night against Arkansas, leading the Lady Vols to a 70-60 victory.
Yet it was a single act of kindness by the junior forward that drew as much attention as any of the aforementioned acts. When teammate Andraya Carter slipped to the floor in the second half, Burdick didn’t just retrieve the loose basketball with Arkansas defender Keira Peak lurking. Burdick also helped Carter to her feet before handing the ball back to her.
Burdick linked a YouTube clip of the play Friday on Twitter and tweeted: “This has definitely been the joke of the day. I wasn’t going anywhere without @DrayaNichole!”