Check out this pair of competitive basketball drills that will help your team prepare for game-like transition situations. First read through the drill descriptions below and then watch the clips to see how each one should be carried out on the court.
Submitted by Dave Witzig, Normal Community HS, Normal, IL
Overview: This full court drill works on several different skills at the same time and is a terrific drill to do within the first 15 minutes of practice.
Drill Set-up: Divide your squad into two equal teams (let’s say Team A and Team B). One team should be positioned on the sideline while the other team should line up down court on the opposite side. Three offensive players from team A will line up at half court with the middle player holding the ball. Meanwhile, two players from team B will line up in the paint area (with one player at the foul line and the second down low) defending that hoop.
How It Works: At the whistle, team A attempts to score on team B in a 3-on-2 attacking situation. Also, a third player from team B stands on the sideline and waits for a coach to call out “Third Player In.” At that moment, the third player sprints in to help out and make it a 3-on-3 contest.
If the offense scores, they will get into a full-court press and double everything in the backcourt. Meanwhile, two new defenders from team A set up in the front court and they prepare to defend their basket. Team B now tries to break team A’s press. If team A steals the ball, they try to score again on their end. If team B breaks the press, the pressing defenders from team A sprint off the court and go to sideline.
The Finish: After team B breaks the press, they will immediately take the ball down court and attack team A’s back two defenders in a 3-on-2 situation. The third team A defender sprints in to provide help on the coach’s call. Games are played up to 8 points with the losing team doing sprints or pushups. This is a fast-paced and competitive drill that your players will love.
Submitted by Eric Musselman, Former Head Coach, Golden State Warriors, Oakland, CA
Overview: This is a tried and true drill for improving a player’s ability to change direction quickly when in transition during a turnover. It also helps with catching passes on the move and making fast break layups at full speed.
Drill Set-up: Player 2 has the ball under the basket while player 1 stands somewhere else on the floor (let’s say on the wing).
How it Works: Player 2 begins by passing to player 1 and then sprinting toward him/her before touching the ball. As soon as Player 2 touches the ball, he/she will turn and sprint back toward the basket.
As Player 2 is sprinting, 1 lobs the ball over 2’s head. Player 2 must gain control of the ball and get a layup while running at full speed. While player 2 is making the layup, player 1 runs to another spot on the floor. Player 2 then grabs the rebound, pivots, locates 1, and fires the ball to 1. Player 2 immediately sprints toward him/her and touches the ball.
The Finish: The drill repeats just like before at full speed until player 2 makes five layups in a row.
The previous clips can be seen on Championship Productions’ DVD “25 Aggressive Transition & Conditioning Drills” produced by Winning Hoops. To check out more drills in the Winning Hoops collection, simply visit our basketball library.