Simply put, if you’re afraid of the moment it will swallow you. The great ones know this, which is why when the game is on the line Kobe Bryant is never afraid to knock down the game winning shot.
It’s why when LeBron James blows by defenders on his way to the rack, there is no fear in his mind that someone might knock him to the ground.
It’s why the budding young stud Kevin Durant has no fear that his defender can stop him when he has his mind set on scoring the basketball.
For the truly elite players, that is just how they are wired. To control their fear is all they know, and it’s a key mental edge going into battle. It doesn’t matter how good the competition is, fear is simply not an option. Unless, of course, the dude they are going up against is 100%-certifiably-off-his-rocker-bat-shit-INSANE.
Then all bets are off.
You can have a counter attack for your opponent’s speed, skill or strength, but you can’t prepare for anything if they’re crazy. That’s the thing that makes crazy people so damn scary: You have no idea what they’re capable of. Think about that for a second, is there anything more terrifying than dealing with someone who is utterly insane?
This happens in all walks of life. Take the rap game for example (SIDE NOTE: I will probably get made fun of for using the term “rap game”, and I’m totally cool with that)…
How do you think the late rapper Notorious B.I.G. felt when he first heard 2Pac’s insane rap attack “Hit ‘Em Up”? 2Pac’s devastating assault was designed to punish Biggie Smalls to the core. It called out his wife and his friends, and even went so far as to promise that he would make sure his kids wouldn’t grow up. I promise you when Biggie heard that his chest got a little tighter and he started to fear for his life. Not that he was afraid he couldn’t go toe-to-toe with someone 2Pac’s size, but at that moment he knew he was dealing with a maniac. A maniac is capable of anything, and that volatility is just plain scary.