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 Changes ???????

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CoachDJR



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PostSubject: Changes ???????   Fri Aug 12, 2011 3:07 pm

Every really good conversation I see started here and those I have in person about the state of our game here in NB always come back to the issue of changes needing to be made. This is probably fair since change in necessary in all things in order to keep up nowadays.

The issue is what changes and how do we implement them. I've been in coaches meetings where people talk about getting rid of zone at higher ages, but we don't shoot well enough as a province longer before needing to make shots may not be the way to go? We've seen rule changes for development with BNB at younger ages but we often see coaches coming up with tactics that curb development to exploit rules! Just about every high level coach I talk to that comes back from national level tournaments or tryouts comments on how the high school game (and similar age class levels) do not play a style or type of game the prepares kids for national levels - granted this is not always the goal, but could we have both great high school basketball and better prepared kids and games?

So let's really have at it - Not just what needs to change but how we can change it? What can fans do, coaches do, players do etc. I understand there also needs to be increased funding, commitment of admin, etc. So if we've got some real solutions for getting those government people on board lets hear those too. .

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Hardfouls



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PostSubject: Re: Changes ???????   Fri Aug 12, 2011 9:58 pm

I don't think NB basketball is broke. I think other provinces are moving ahead faster than we are. If we want to make fundamental changes I think BNB needs to have a full time technical director who can be the evangelist who is out in the communities working with the minor associations educating coaches and helping implement programs at the youth level. At the same time, the TD can work with the elite coaches (bantam elite, summer teams, CP, etc.) to make sure we have continuity from year-to-year with the long term development of our elite athletes.

It would also be nice to see a stronger affiliation between BNB and NBIAA, especially with respect to coaching development. High school coaches have a significant influence over a player's development, yet there is very little being done as far as mandatory certification or training. Once again, a full time TD at BNB could be oversee NBIAA basketball coaches training and also offer coach evaluations like CB does for provincial team coaches at Nationals.

The officials within this province also need to see themselves as an important element in player and coach development and need to take an active role in making changes. Representatives from NBAABO need to be at the table when BNB is discussing changes and that association should come away from those meetings with clear action items.


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CoachDJR



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PostSubject: Re: Changes ???????   Mon Aug 15, 2011 12:50 pm

This is getting a lot of views but not a lot of comments . . . that may mean something or nothing at all . . . I'll reserve judgement.

To try to keep it moving. Some things I think we need to change:

- BNB and School Districts need to co-exist and support each other. I understand they have different purposes but there is a basic reality of our rural province. 99% of the gyms in this province are in schools. This isn't the US where school boards and town folks control school budgets and usage. The school districts do. We also don't have rec facilities, church leagues etc that you find in larger centres. If our kids are going to be able to get into gyms BNB has to get sponsorship or at least support of school districts so that kids can get into gymnasiums and it is not cost prohibitive. If kids are going to play they need places and facilites to play in as easily and often as possible and these are schools. I understand insurance concerns, liability, contracts, etc etc. These are where sports like basketball need to be played as they are the facilities and links need to be made to get kids better and not just for elite development but usage for coaches, kids, teams and associations in general.
and

- Coaches and officials need to make and allow kids develop high level skills defensive side of the ball. Our offensive skills also need to get better but I'll get to that later. They do not need advance because the level/type of defense you see in a lot of games in the province isn't making kids better. If a kid actually goes hard in a straight line to the basket in NB in a high school game they do not need to land and pass or finish undercontrol off two feet because any contact they get at the rim or in the air is going to be a foul. At nationals going reckless off one foot is going to be a shot block or shot alter through contact by the initial defender and help. Fouls at nationals that get them to the line would have a number of coaches in this province up and asking for unsportsmanlikes or talking to the refs about dirty play if it happened in a high school game. Our best attackers never have to learn to make decisions on attacks (how to finish, when to pass) because the defense is worried about fouls or they get bailed out when the defense comes hard.
This isn't a criticism of officials as much as how kids are playing. Either the tactics they are being taught or the are the energy and effort they put in to protect themselves on defense cause problems. They arm length off and slide to allow the offense soft penetration that will be sagged or helped on anyway giving up a shot that they think will be missed. If not the high- bad close out will follow on help-recover, is way off the ball so they don't get beat on penetration rather then taking away the shot and drive with a strong athletic close out. I see teams use a lot of soft zone as a tactic to force mediocre teams to shoot the ball to beat them or make the other teams best player a jump shooter to win games. I also see the other teams best players and our best candidates to be higher level players not taking on a lot of responsibilty on defense to protect themselves from fouls. I don't know how many times I watch games where coaches put in their closer or stopper on defense as if this kid is remarkable at defense and 9 times out of 10, it is just a kid expending as much energy on defense as you see everyone at a high level expending. They only have 1 or 2 though because the rest of their kids won't risk fouls or want to save energy for the offensive end.
This is a combo of individual effort, coaching tactics, and officiating that create of culture of the way (imo) too many of the games look in this province. Now it isn't true in all cases, I look at the Frederictons, Leo Hayes, Sugarloafs, Devon Parks of the world on the boys side and they play defense tough and hard all the time at every position though all of these teams have had top level provincial coaches working with them in the past. ON the girls side the same is true with Riverview, Fredericton, Dalhousie, Bernice McNaughton, etc. Ironically enough our provincial defense is something we are recognized for at the national level. These changes would allow us to be better defensivley but most importantly would force our kids offensive skills to play vs. defense that resembles high level defense all the time and make our offense better. Our kids believe given enough time and the right player the ball they can get a layup or a trip to the foul line on every possession. This is just not true.

- Offense. The offensive areas that I see our kids needing the most improvement are pretty straight forward:
*Physicality. I see too many soft penetrations, cuts to get the ball further away from the rim to avoid denial, screens designed to get open and attacking rather then making them do it on their own. Few locks downs outside the post. Etc.We need more straight line attacks, through contact with good decisions at the end rather then looking for calls.
* Skills at speed. I would like to see more passes, dribbles, jump stops and other footwork made at high speed through physical high speed contact and with our non-dominant hands. Sprinting cuts, curling off screens etc.
* Catching shot ready with a high shot pocket and shooting it when defense doesn't close out properly. More shooting and making of shots in general rather than an obsession with attacking the rim to get to the foul line. We just aren't going to get there vs larger more physical defense. Also finishing properly and on balance with footwork that gives you options
* Team play. Attacking and passing to let the open player make shots rather then working to get one player a contested shot through multiple defenders. Passing the ball an extra time on the break or out of penetration to get someone a cleaner catch and look.

(As you can see most of these skills are dependant on needing to execute them vs. high pressure defense.)

Lots more but I've written enough to get some response I hope.
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GM Breaker '84-'88



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PostSubject: Re: Changes ???????   Wed Aug 17, 2011 2:56 am


Why do officials need to be a part of the process ? It is not their responsiblity at all....other than educating teams, players and coaches on rule changes. An important element in player development? Please educate me on this.

Getting rid of zone defense? Really? Just about every team in the world plays zone now and again.

Why is it necessary for every team to develop players for a national team? Should that be the goal of every coach? So, lets say Team A has one potential provincial player....should the coach play a specific way just for that player? I can't believe that...how many coaches at the high school level think about developing a player or players for nationals rather than thinking about Fridays game against a division opponent? I would think nil....and I would hope nil. I think there are two trains of thought:

1. Provincial, National teams, 2. High School or

1. High School 2. Provincial, National teams

Maybe I am in the minority, but I'd rather see my high school win a provincial title than NB winning a gold medal.....
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getreal



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PostSubject: Re: Changes ???????   Wed Aug 17, 2011 9:01 am

why is it NB coaches/fans etc continue to post a ridiculous amount of comments per day, compared to all other provinces listed here! These coaches have all the right strategies to improve it seems, but continue to fall short. They cant even compete with their neighboring provinces LOLOLOL Start putting your energy into actually putting in man hours helping them, instead of continuing with all these startegies.
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Mark Scott



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PostSubject: Healthy Dialogue   Wed Aug 17, 2011 11:37 am

getreal wrote:
why is it NB coaches/fans etc continue to post a ridiculous amount of comments per day, compared to all other provinces listed here! These coaches have all the right strategies to improve it seems, but continue to fall short. They cant even compete with their neighboring provinces LOLOLOL Start putting your energy into actually putting in man hours helping them, instead of continuing with all these startegies.

From my perspective here in BC, all the dialogue seems to be very healthy. It is great that the NB forums have so many comments and suggestions. It says to me that your community is healthy.... it is the ones who are quiet who have given up...or don't care.
Mark
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CoachDJR



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PostSubject: Re: Changes ???????   Wed Aug 17, 2011 1:59 pm

GM Breaker '84-'88 wrote:

Why do officials need to be a part of the process ? It is not their responsiblity at all....other than educating teams, players and coaches on rule changes. An important element in player development? Please educate me on this.

Without being overly elaborate because they are a stakeholder that impacts our player development. How they interpret rules how strictly they enforce things (contact, footwork, rules interps, etc) impacts how games are coached and played. We have lots of good officials in NB and poor ones just like everywhere else. What we do have a dwindling number of young officials and an increasing number of old lions that aren't able to keep up and judge every play so they are calling what they think happened or how they think the game should be played. Coaches and Associations need to do a better job of encouraging young player to give back when their playing careers are done as coaches and officials. This will allow the officials that are there to work on improving their craft just like players and coaches do rather then keeping up with demand. More officials trying to improve the quality of the game can't be a bad thing can it?

Getting rid of zone defense? Really? Just about every team in the world plays zone now and again.

I'm not opposed to the playing of zone (though developmentally below varsity I don't think you need to play it) I'm more concerned about the lack of defensive fundamentals and what that does to the game and offense. If you can play zone and have kids actively pressuring the ball, blocking cutters, communicating, switching, helping and rotating and playing good on ball defense in a zone: fill your boots. I was more concerned about the amount of times I see soft pack it in defense (m2m and zone) that lets a couple of athletic kids be athletic and everyone just plugs up the paint not teaching anyone how to defend or play offense + really not helping their teammates competitively in practice.

Why is it necessary for every team to develop players for a national team? Should that be the goal of every coach? So, lets say Team A has one potential provincial player....should the coach play a specific way just for that player? I can't believe that...how many coaches at the high school level think about developing a player or players for nationals rather than thinking about Fridays game against a division opponent? I would think nil....and I would hope nil. I think there are two trains of thought:

1. Provincial, National teams, 2. High School or

1. High School 2. Provincial, National teams

Maybe I am in the minority, but I'd rather see my high school win a provincial title than NB winning a gold medal.....

I don't think you are in the minority. I also don't think it has to be black and white school ball vs provincial ball: can't it just be basketball. Can't you simply ask kids to be the best they can? Teach them lessons learned about basketball and life by trying to do high level things in practice and games, so they are required to push themselves on and off the court. I would think one should go hand in hand with the other. If everyone on a team plays great on ball defense, active defense and is pushing themselves and their teammates to improve won't they have a team that can compete defensively for a provincial title while improving the caliber of player on their team? If a team has players working an playing at speed, strong fundamentals and is needing to score everyday in practice against tenacious d aren't those kids going to be able to compete for a provincial title and be preparing for a higher level?

I think developing quality basketball players is universal. If you say that kids over here are never going to be at the next level so lets make it easier for them, have lower expectations for them, do things to let them have some short term success aren't you just pigeon holing and short changing those kids? Push them to be the best they can and give them the opportunity and option develop and keep/get a dream. I thought the entire purpose of CB trying to adopt unified rules and putting out a long term development model and plan was to do just this. Have a basketball community focused on building together a base of skilled, athletic, basketball players who play an principles and skills built in a collaborative effort. I thought the point was to build a national basketball community and community based in excellence. I think we can do this in my province. Just one man's opinion.
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pastprimetime



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PostSubject: Re: Changes ???????   Wed Aug 17, 2011 3:23 pm

Coaching education is what is important. Zone as played by Syracuse U are great, they guard the perimter very tough-always pressure the ball, never let the players stand and pass, the block cutters, match up very well in rebounding, they have and use excellent M2M principles. The Zones we see more often at the high school arenna (and also many of out M2M's) are played in a zagging format. This zagging fornat is being used because the oppostion has very poor outside shooting. So D stands and waits for the rebound. This is not good for preparing players for the next level and this is a problem of how some coaches coach the zone and M2M.
As for shooting, NB has some very good shooters, and some very nice skill players. Our problem is we do not have to play the type of game in our province at the school level, as we need to play at the provincial level. Our good shooters get rushed at nationals by quicker and better on ball defenders, better close-outs, early help-side defenders and our shooting percentge drops. The same players who shoot really well in our high school leagues sometimes have difficulty at the next level as do the rest of our players on getting the ball to the right person at the Right time, not half second late.
Because we have many coaches who feel the need to win championships, the game is very often influenced by coaching stragies. iE not all players can dribble the ball well to attack the hoop, so we tend to post these taller players, have them stand close to the rim for rebounds as opposed to trainingn them to be ball handlers and shooters. Think of the mini ball where some players are actually told not to dribble the ball. While this may be good for team record, how does it improve the individual player and ultimately the next levels of play. I would love to get a set of players each year where everyone had attack skills having been introducded and worked on so that anyplayer has the ability to attack the rim (Shoot, pass, dribble) instead of just getting rid of the ball. bounce bounce bounce bounce bounce as opposed to Evil or Very Mad Rolling Eyes bounce bounce silent
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39forever



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PostSubject: Re: Changes ???????   Thu Aug 18, 2011 9:00 pm

So NB finished well back at nationals, is that really a surprise, if for no other reason than numbers perhaps? If Campobello continually loses to Fredericton High, is that saying the Campobello program is very poor and the coaches there are not doing their jobs? No. Size of school plays a huge part, that's why we have classifications. We should always strive to achieve beyond what is expected, there will always be teams that do (ie. under 15 Nova Scotia boys), but really, let's put everything into perspective. Let's continue to do whatever we can to improve our program(s), produce the best players we can, and compete at Nationals to the best of our abilities, I don't see how that can be a failure.
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CoachDJR



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PostSubject: Re: Changes ???????   Thu Aug 18, 2011 10:33 pm

39forever wrote:
So NB finished well back at nationals, is that really a surprise, if for no other reason than numbers perhaps? If Campobello continually loses to Fredericton High, is that saying the Campobello program is very poor and the coaches there are not doing their jobs? No. Size of school plays a huge part, that's why we have classifications. We should always strive to achieve beyond what is expected, there will always be teams that do (ie. under 15 Nova Scotia boys), but really, let's put everything into perspective. Let's continue to do whatever we can to improve our program(s), produce the best players we can, and compete at Nationals to the best of our abilities, I don't see how that can be a failure.

I would agree that population can play a significant role in the advantages you can have. I would also point out the the success of Nova scotia is not anomaly they've had medal round success at both Canada Games and nationals the last few years. While larger then NB certainly not beyond our level based on head to head matchups during that time. So not out of the realm of reach. They appear to be finding a formula that works for them.

Canada has the 35th largest population in the world, but sports wise we certainly rise above that top 12 in all time olympic medal count. 12th in senior women's basketball in the world, 25th in the senior mens, top 10 in our younger ranks. Heck we are world recognized as a leader in sport and endeavours beyond sports yearly and regularly; Ddespite the drastic population difference between world leaders. Size is definitely a factor but not one what can't be overcome through passionate collaborate effort combined with a planning and guidance. We should be doing what we can to do our best! But if you leave people to do the best they can currently without inspiration, guidance and challenge to be better they will not improve as much as they would with all those things. We should keep doing the things that make us successful but find ways to improve and grow shooting for the stars!
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Mark Scott



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PostSubject: Not the size of the dog....   Fri Aug 19, 2011 12:14 pm


Lithuania's population is 3.3 million. Men's FIBA ranking:5.
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CoachDJR



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PostSubject: Re: Changes ???????   Tue Aug 23, 2011 9:09 pm

I had an interesting conversation today.

If you look at the JV schedule they have a slightly earlier start date (to accommodate their schedules). Though in a lot of cases this conflicts with other sports and tryouts for multiple teams so it really just becomes an abbreviated pre-season.

Now combine this with the fact that middle school now has no zone not just in the half court but full court as well.

You've got a JV level (which was originally created to have developmental teams as second teams in high schools though I know that is not the common view point among all coaches) with less prep time and kids who now have to prepare for more tactics then they've ever been exposed to previously.

I'm not saying that you outlaw zone at a JV level, but if CB doesn't want the u15 aged kids playing it and our kids at a JV level have no experience with any kind suddenly face every kind imaginable . . . it seems to me there would need to be a phase in process of some kind.

If half the best boys and girls in this age group in NB can compete vs the best in Canada without needing to understand or prepare tactics to deal with zone, it seems odd to me that every JV team in the province will have to discuss and prepare kids for facing zone traps and half court zone in their first two weeks together. JV coaches in the province will need to talk about how to attack zone, what zone is, and install a zone press break &/ half court zone offense when they should be getting to know kids, build skills and confidence and create a team atmosphere.

I'm not sure outlawing zone is necessarily the answer, but their does seem to be a disconnect between what they are prepared for prior to JV level and what the tactically are being asked to absorb in two weeks. Thoughts? Suggestions?
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coach12



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PostSubject: Re: Changes ???????   Wed Aug 24, 2011 9:43 am

I'm going to go back a little bit, as I haven't been on here in a while.

I really think that we're all responsible for the development of all aspects of the game. As a coach, I believe that I can help develop players and I believe that I have a role to help develop referees...along with, my own development as a coach. There's nothing that makes me crazier that continuing to hear people separate coaches and officials. There needs to be that dialogue between the two groups in order to move our game forward. That being said, I understand that it is a difficult process, because in both cases people have trouble not taking things personally and people also have trouble in not saying personal things. I truly believe that that is a major hurdle in our game. We need to have that dialogue.

***

As far as striving for National teams and Provincial teams, I understand that it's not realistic for everyone and that a lot of people in the province would rather have their high school team with a provincial banner rather than have NB win a National title, but the problem that I do have with this thinking is that when "these" teams have players who could excel at the next level they do them an injustice. They do them an injustice by simply focusing on their provincial title and not necessarily worrying about the development of each of the players. The best players don't continue to get better, they plateau and we try to make everyone around them "servicable". They do not learn/develop the skills necessary to compete at the next level...that definitely is not fair to those players.

***

Do I think that we're going to compete with the BC's and Ontario's on the world every year? Nope...but every now and then we will have teams that will be able to compete and beat those teams and we need to have our players prepared for that. We saw a great example not that long ago in our province when Grand Manan beat FHS...How did they do this? They had great athletes who learned how to play the game properly. They played one of the toughest man-man defenses that any team has ever played. (oh, and I'm pretty sure that they were missing 3 of their players that should've been there as well...both Johnsons and Sharkey was starting for FHS) My question here would be? Did the coach worry about a provincial title or the development of his players? If the coach was worried about winning a provincial title then that team would've remained in the "A" division (where they beat the living hell out of teams), but instead decided to play in the AA league where they lost to Woodstock in the final. Do you honestly think those kids would've rather won a A title by 40 pts? I would hope not.---by the way, the same thing happened a couple of years ago when Dalhousie moved up to AA (Bathurst won A title) and then when Dalhousie moved up and played AAA not long after. Do you not think that they could've won a title in those years? What is better for the development of those players?

All of these teams had their players learn how to play the game the right way. That is the difference! They didn't plop back in a shitty zone where they were protecting their best players from foul trouble, they taught them how to stay out of foul trouble by getting themselves in better defensive stance and gaining better positioning.

Kudos to those coaches who worried about the development of their players and worried less about provincial banners!

***

Coach DJR...to be honest, I'm not exactly sure what the answer is...I'm definitely not against teams playing zone defenses, I'm just against players playing shitty zones defenses, because they have zero man to man principles.

I think whatever "rules" or "guidelines" that are put in, that the same coaches would spend just as much time teaching ways how to bend the rules (by playing an extremely sagging man to man) instead of teaching proper "get in your face" man to man. The same things happen on offense too..."we'll just continue to run the same play for our best player" and nobody truly learns how to play the game. They just know how to run a couple of plays--well shit, what happens when that play is taken away...turnover.

Maybe I'm wrong, but no matter what we change as far as guidelines/rules it won't make a difference. I don't think anything will change until ,as coaches, we start to make the development of our players our top priority.

Sorry, about the rant.
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Coach to Develop



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PostSubject: Re: Changes ???????   Mon Aug 29, 2011 10:42 am

Quote :
I think whatever "rules" or "guidelines" that are put in, that the same coaches would spend just as much time teaching ways how to bend the rules (by playing an extremely sagging man to man) instead of teaching proper "get in your face" man to man. The same things happen on offense too..."we'll just continue to run the same play for our best player" and nobody truly learns how to play the game. They just know how to run a couple of plays--well shit, what happens when that play is taken away...turnover.

Maybe I'm wrong, but no matter what we change as far as guidelines/rules it won't make a difference. I don't think anything will change until ,as coaches, we start to make the development of our players our top priority.


I agree 100%. Develop your players to be the best athletes they can be. Stop changing the rules, and start teaching players to play real basketball. Really how good of a zone can a lower age class actually play? It's not an NBA quality zone being played. Teach kids to make the right reads and the cuts to get open to be successful. By eliminating zones and any other rule changes, all you are doing is making it someone elses problem to deal with later and delaying player development.

I will always disagree with the mentality that players from small communities can never play beyond high school or that NB will never be successful because our population is small. An effective program will make NB successful. A disjointed basketball community with different priorities will not.

Look at the sport that Canada is the most successful with, hockey. We are world leaders in hockey. Why can't we look at how hockey builds their players and follow that model?
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PostSubject: Re: Changes ???????   Mon Aug 29, 2011 6:42 pm

An interesting read. Do you think coaches spend too much time making players fit their respective system rather than developing a system that fits the player/skill set they are blessed with? I propose that some development is stifled because coaches don't allow gifted player to follow the direction of their natural gifted-ness. Do you ask a natural slasher to cut off screens to find a 3 for the "good of the team"?
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