Millions will once again be locked into Michael Jordan's new ESPN documentary The Last Dance on Sunday to see the next two episodes after it truly showed an inside look at how Jordan became the best to ever play basketball.
The first two episodes showed Jordan coming up as a rookie and the work that he would put in on a daily basis to be great. And that was even when doctors believed he shouldn't be playing injured like he did in his sophomore season.
On Episode 5 of The Cookie Club presented by Insomnia Cookies with J.D. Davis and Dominic Smith, watching Jordan in the documentary got them thinking about what exactly it takes to be great from their professional athlete perspective.
"I remember coming into my first spring training being 18 years old and they sent me on the big field," Smith reflected. "David Wright, Lucas Duda and Ike Davis were over there taking live BP off of Bobby Parnell and [Jon] Niese at the time. …I remember just being in awe as an 18-year-old."
Smith added that watching what they did during that spring training on and off the field showed their dedication to the game and each of their crafts.
Working off the field and wanting to put the extra work in like Jordan did is something that Davis alluded to as the real way to become great. So that's why Davis brought up Smith's anecdote from the past of how he would take dry swings in the shower in his hotel room. Stuff like that is what sets others apart.
"As Dom said, taking those dry hacks when he's in the hotel room or when he's in his room. It's true," Davis said. "You have four at-bats, five at-bats a game but in reality off the field you're taking hundreds of swings, thousands of swings…"
And if you think taking dry hacks at nothing doesn't work, Smith said Davis showed it first-hand.
"In spring training, J.D. was playing and then got hurt a little bit and then he came back. He had one game back and he might have went 0-for-2 or something like that and maybe a walk. He's like 'Man, I'm taking my bat home today. I want to get some dry hacks in.'"
In his next game, Davis was locked in and had two hits including a homer.
To be great, you need to make the most of your time perfecting your craft on and off the field. It might be difficult or tiresome, but that's what any of the greats will say they did. And that's what Smith, Davis, and the rest of the Mets are doing each day to be their best selves on the field when the bright lights turn on.
"It's definitely a lifestyle, it's a mindset," Smith said.