Serving as a team captain in the sport of basketball comes with a variety of responsibilities outside of simply playing the game. Successful team captains must devote time to becoming a leader, putting in hard work every day. They must have a desire to be seen as a positive figure on the team, both on and off the court, and be able to effectively guide their teammates to success. The following traits and abilities are just some of many that every team captain should possess.


Captains must be able to motivate their teammates at all times. Whether the team is on the verge of a late-game comeback, losing by a large margin, or just slowing down in general, team captains should interject and inspire their teammates to give 100% of their efforts. At times, this may require a little bit of aggression if mistakes begin to pile up and emotions begin to rise. That being said, a strong-willed individual who is able to recover from any negative situation is a well-suited player to take on the role of captain.

Precisely how team captains intend to motivate fellow players may differ. There is not necessarily a ‘right’ or ‘wrong’ way to do so. For example, some captains may bring more aggressive temperaments to the table, while others can be calm and collective and still find success in a leadership position. The main concern is whether or not this player actually wants to serve as team captain. Should they possess the drive and willingness to become that, their means of execution matter little.


While all players and coaches should be respectful of athletes and peers, team captains must exude this characteristic. These leaders must understand the role that every coach and athlete plays in the success of their team, and to never undermine someone in a position that may be considered “below” theirs. Captains should respect every one of their teammates skill sets and what they bring to the court, as well as their roles off the court.

Additionally, team captains should be respectful of their opponents, the fans (family members and general supporters), and the officials as well. They serve as representatives of their team and must act accordingly in order to display a professional, yet competitive nature.

Role Model

Not unlike being an effective motivator, serving as a role model to fellow players allow them to follow in the captain’s footsteps, which, in turn, creates positive relationships. Teammates work together to achieve their goals when the team’s captain is one that others look up to. Consistency in this sense is therefore absolutely crucial. Team captains should be respectful, kind, and inspiring both on and off the court.

Team captains have to be your hardest workers, along with your best players. People tend to follow those who have a work ethic unmatched. When teammates see the leaders working, it makes it easier for them to receive what a captain may say to them. Also, those with a great work ethic don’t have to do a lot of talking. Their example becomes their voice.