Once a basketball athlete for the Belmont Bruins, today Drew Hanlen is one of the most recognized personal coaches in the sport, working with some of the most gifted NBA players. As most of his clients are considered the best of the best, he assures there is one with the highest IQ.
According to Hanlen, there is very little he can teach Washington’s Bradley Beal, as he guarantees that the Wizards star is the smartest basketball player he’s ever met.
Beal also owes a lot to Hanlen’s skill drills, as they’ve been working together for over six years now:
“Then, Brad Beal. I always joke around and tell people, ‘Brad knows everything that I know,’” Hanlen admitted. “We’ve been together for so long and sort of built Pure Sweat together. He’s like the Pure Sweat OG. Brad and I have so many conversations about basketball, and we’ll bounce ideas back and forth off each other, and I’ve learned so much from him too.”
Hanlen’s training firm is called Pure Sweat, and it includes other clients suchs as current MVP winner Joel Embiid, Boston’s star Jayson Tatum, Zach LaVine from the Bulls, and Beal of course.
The skills coach revealed that once he creates a program, he always tried it first with the Washington guard, as he’s been great at delivering critical feedback on his ideas, and this way perfecting the training circuit.
“[Since he was one of my first NBA clients], he was kind of my guinea pig,” Hanlen explained. “We tried a lot of things out on Brad, and if it worked, we’d try to make it better and perfect it [and continue using it], and if it didn’t work, we’d kick it to the curb or try to make adjustments until it did work.
“But Brad is one of the highest IQ guys I’ve ever worked with, and I’ve stolen so much from him just because we’ve been together so long and built this thing together.”
Hanlen is also impressed by current league MVP Joel Embiid’s deep knowledge of the game
Even though he’s had a longer relationship with the Washington athlete, he considers all of his clients to be very smart basketball players with a high IQ for the sport. However, he made special mention of Sixers star Joel Embiid, who he recalled how once he felt caugh off guard by his knowledge of the game.
It’s a tale of hard work and dedication: this is the “improbable” journey of Joel Embiid from Cameroon to the City of Brotherly Love and NBA superstardom.@DrewHanlen and @MarcZumoff on witnessing Embiid’s journey to becoming the NBA MVP.
👉 https://t.co/ddOfUitD7m pic.twitter.com/obxhsM3VGu
— CNN Sports (@cnnsport) May 9, 2023
“But Joel Embiid has a very high IQ,” Hanlen shared. “There are times where I’ll be showing him some clips, and he’ll stop me and talk about how he remembers Patrick Ewing using that in the playoffs in a certain year, and I’m just like, ‘Dang’, he’s a really big film junkie.”
Just like the big man from Cameroon, the skills coach said that Jayson Tatum also spends limitless hours studying the game and admiring his personal heroes. The Celtics foward is well-known for being a Kobe Bryant fan, as Hanlen shared how he’s been analyzing the Lakers legend ever since he was 13 years of age.