Athlete Superstitions: Sami Massih


Sammy Butera

Boys Varsity Basketball beats Elk Grove Jan. 22 with a score of 60-31.

By Isa Gil , Social Media Editor

Basketball is a sport renowned for its teamwork and the ability of people to work as one in order to win a game. Despite it being a game based on communication, individuals within the team have their own pre-game rituals and routines to prepare.

Senior Sami Massih is on Niles West’s Boys Varsity Basketball team. Every day after school you can catch him and his teammates in the main gym practicing their game plan and skills. Massih has been playing basketball since the seventh grade and has created his own “ritual” to complete before he walks onto the court.

“I don’t know if you can call this a ‘superstition,’ but before every game, I say a little prayer. I say a prayer because no matter what, God has my back, and it is a nice way to continue my faith,” Massih said.

Religion for many athletes provides an extra source of confidence before beginning their sporting events. By saying small prayers or an act that pertains to religion, athletes have a morale boost to give them more strength. For many athletes, it is also a source of comfort; as Massih has the idea of “God has my back,” he feels comfortable knowing that he is protected.

Massih’s friend and teammate, Kevin Guillaume, admires Massih’s work ethic and his mini ritual before any game.

“I think it’s good that Sami values his religion because some people don’t like to really do things like these in public, but clearly it’s not an issue for him, which is a great confidence booster,” Guillaume said.

Obviously, his pre-game ritual has been working for him because every time Massih takes the court, his peers can see how he takes off and leaves everything out on the court.

“Sami has an extreme dedication to basketball, and it is obvious every time you see him on the court. He plays with passion, strength, and always has his game face on for every game,” junior and girls basketball player Lidia Fakhoury said.

Throughout his basketball career, tracing all the way from middle school, Massih has found strength in his prayers which has allowed him to stay focused, confident, and passionate about his sport. Even if it is not the typical “superstition,” he feels it has helped him abundantly throughout the years.