Players don't just get better. They get better at many small things that add up to an overall better player. For example, passing requires getting better at things like vision, timing, balance, speed and decision making. If players improve in all of these areas, then they become better passers.
For players, it is important to understand how very basic things contribute to their performance in a game. From this understanding, players can start working backward to identify and correct the details that lead to overall improvement. Coaches often ask players to do drills or exercises that may seem irrelevant but may be one of the many details players need for improvement.
John Wooden, a former NCAA college coach who won 10 championships in 12 years, put it best in his book "When you see a successful individual, a champion, a 'winner,' you can be sure that you are looking at an individual who pays great attention to the perfection of minor details."