Cotton’s personal creeds

Bryce Cotton is an American professional basketball player, a three times National Basketball League (NBL) Most Valuable Player, three times NBL Champion and a Perth Wildcats team member since 2017.

Faith and a dream

Growing up in a small city, I had goals that weren’t commonly reached in Tucson, Arizona; especially not the neighbourhood I was from. However, it was instilled in me to have faith in God and extreme belief in myself to accomplish whatever I put my mind to. From the early age of seven years old, I knew that I wanted to make it to the National Basketball Association (NBA) one day and nothing excited me more than eventually becoming a professional basketball player. A lot of odds were stacked against me, but through the grace of God, I overcame every obstacle to get where I am today. Hence, having faith and a vision to see my dreams through to the finish line was all the fuel I needed on my road to success.

Effort > results

In life, we can only control so much. There are things that happen to us beyond our control and it is up to us how we decide to react to it. That is where effort comes into play. For example, as a professional athlete I may have plenty of goals I wish to accomplish but obstacles beyond my control can hinder those opportunities. Instead of letting that discourage me, I do the best I can and give everything I have to make the most of the situation I am in, and can live with the results whether it’s a good or bad conclusion because I know in my heart I did everything in my power to maximise my situation.

Journey greater than the destination My Mum always said that the journey is better than the destination. I never quite understood what that meant when she first said it but as I got older and had some life experiences of my own, it became clear as day. This is very sentimental to me because of the long journey I’ve had with basketball. I always wanted to make it to the NBA and never cared if I played for one day, one year or ten. I just wanted to be able to say, “I made it to the NBA.” I had stints in my first two professional seasons in the NBA, mainly with the Utah Jazz and Phoenix Suns, before playing the next four years in different places overseas – Europe, China and Australia. I always knew I would get to the NBA somehow someway (because of my faith in my dream), and even though I didn’t stay as long as I would’ve liked, it’s not the point.

I did everything in my power to accomplish my goal and did just that. I wouldn’t trade my path for anything in the world because I’ve found a wonderful foundation in Australia and my basketball career has taken off out here astronomically.

All in all, the saying “the journey is greater than the destination” pertains heavily to my life simply to the fact that accomplishing my lifelong goal of making it to the NBA wasn’t my most memorable moment. Rather it was the entire journey that gave me so many unexpected twists and turns of adversity that made it all worthwhile.

Author – Bryce Cotton

Republished with permission from Bryce Cotton.

Unshakeable hope for SportsFest 2021

As the final applause resounded around Leschenault Leisure Centre for the trophy winners of SportsFest 2019, little did anyone know that the sports competition would be hanging up its boots the following year while the world struggled through a pandemic.

Standing in the gap created by the physical absence of the games in 2020 was SportsFest 2.0, an online version that saw competitors submitting videos of themselves attempting various challenges such as three-point basketball shots and claiming the most kilometres cycled in a week. As restrictions eased and word circulated that SportsFest would run again in 2021, it became clear just how valued the connections, competition and ethos of SportsFest are for young adults in our family of churches. Baptist Churches Western Australia Next Generations Pastor, Ed Devine spoke of the great response to the news, with 26 teams signed up.

“The combination of over 1,000 young people gathered from around Western Australia, the various sports which cater for all interests and levels, and the space to invite a friend to hear about the life-giving message of Jesus have proven to stand the test of time and popularity,” Ed said. 

The organising team is in full swing, ensuring the event operates in a way that meets government regulations and is COVID-safe. 

Ed shared his gratitude for Keith Campbell, Terry Hicks, Alan Holt, Jeff Kemp and the team at Morley Baptist Church for their significant input alongside Ben Jefferies, who started as the Baptist Churches Western Australia Events Coordinator in July. 

The theme for SportsFest 2021 is ‘Unshakeable Hope’, and the Master of Ceremonies will be Pastor Ed Devine. 

“We want to acknowledge that people have had a tough couple of years which has affected health, work and life plans,” Ed said. 

“While we own the reality of the struggle, we also ask the question, ‘where do we find an unshakeable hope?’” 

“We believe that the answer lies in the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.” 

This message will be expressed at the Saturday Night Live service through multi-media, dance and music. Those gathered will also hear from two speakers, Pastor Cung Lal from Myanmar Baptist Church Perth and Kathy Sinclair, Church Relationship Manager at Baptist World Aid Australia. Cung shared his perspective on the theme. 

“I have realised that it doesn’t matter which country you come from or whether you are rich or poor; without the unshakeable hope of Jesus in our lives we are subject to hopelessness in this fragile world – I look forward to offering the living hope of Jesus to people.”

For more information or to register, visit