Reader-Submitted Basketball Play of Week: 2-3 Motion Against Zone

Submitted by Vinod Vachani, Head Basketball Coach, Welham Girls’ School, Dehra Dun, India

This zone offense is a structured motion, which is highly effective against odd front zone defenses. Through this offense, you can take full advantage of the 3-point shots and get the ball comfortably to the post players in scoring position. It is a simple offense and can be taught easily. Overall, there are lot of skip passes made which create gaps in the zone. Plus, defensive players have to make a lot of adjustments which gets your shooters open for three-pointers.

Diagram #1

1 passes the ball to 2 and cuts to the ball side corner. 3 makes a V-cut and replaces 1’s spot on the floor. 5 sets a screen into the middle for 4 who is flashing to the ball side elbow and sets back to the low post area.

Diagram #2

2 passes the ball to 1. 5 holds the low post for a few seconds and then clears away to the opposite low block. 4 now cuts hard to the basket looking for a pass from 1. 3 flares to the wing looking for a skip pass from 1.

Diagram #3

2 passes the ball to 4 at the high post. 5 seals the middle. 1 flares to the corner looking for a quick three-point shot.

Diagram #4

If 4 hits 1, 5 clears the lane and cuts to the other block. 4 will go for a strong cut to the basket expecting a pass from 1.

Diagram #5

If 4 passes the ball to 3, then 4 has two options: A) Look for a lob pass from 3 off 5’s back screen OR B) 4 can cut directly to the ball side block.

Diagram #6

5 comes to the ball side elbow. If open, 3 can go for the three pointer. Otherwise, he can dribble to the corner to attract the defensive player on him so he dish off to 4 with an easy pass.

Keys to Remember

  1. Do not rush for a jump shot. Attack the zone in and dish the ball out to the open shooter.
  2. Use ball-fakes and exploit the gaps in the zone.
  3. Screen the zone and use skip passes to open shooters.
  4. Dribble less and pass more against the zone, as it will take the thinking time away from the defensive players.
  5. REBOUND! Whenever a shot is attempted, attack the board because you can rebound better against a zone and win the battle on the board.

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