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In the latest edition of All Access, we head south to sunny Florida for a practice session with Montverde Academy head coach Kevin Boyle. Follow along as the former Naismith National Coach of the Year leads his squad through a variety of breakdown drills focused on man-to-man defense.
Zigzags & Catch up
Last month, we watched UConn women’s head coach Geno Auriemma take his team through a similar zigzag drill. This time, Coach Boyle puts a little wrinkle on the drill as players go with no basketball.
In this example, players must work on getting their head on the ball so they can turn the ball handler. It’s imperative that defenders get in front of the offensive player. It’s really the key to slowing down a team’s fast break.
So why no ball? Well, according to Coach Boyle, you find out that at this level, most players don’t handle the ball well enough yet to make this drill valuable for the defense.
Next, with “Catch Up”, the drill plays out similar to before, except this time defenders must run to a spot about three feet ahead and then beat the offensive guy to that spot.
Getting Under or Over the Screen
Next, get two players on each side of the full court to act as screeners. Defenders must be away of the screen coming their way and get either under or over it. Be sure to make this game speed. Don’t just go through the motions. As for the offensive player, really try to run the defender into the screen. This is good practice for realistic situations in games.
Tracing a Dead Ball
Finally, get two lines set up. Players will go 1-on-1. The offensive player will dribble and then get stuck somewhere on the court. The defender must play up their face and tough defense. The offensive player works on being strong with the ball.
Next, make the drill 2-on-2 and have the new defender deny a second offensive player. The dribbler will run into trouble on the fast break while his teammate works to get open. The deny defender will do everything he can to prevent the pass from happening. Offensive players should look to go backdoor in these situations.
The previous clips can be seen on Championship Productions’ DVD ”All Access Basketball Practice with Kevin Boyle.” To browse more videos in our extensive All Access lineup, simply head over to our basketball library.
Last summer we introduced the 1-2-1-1 Diamond Press with esteemed head basketball coach Don Showalter. Now check out a complementary drill that will boost your team’s transition play and give your players an extra edge when implementing a full-court press system.
The tip drill is a key drill conducted by Coach Showalter in about four out of five team practices. It serves as a terrific warm-up drill for the press and fast break situations.
One offensive player will start by dribbling up the length of the court. Meanwhile, a trailing defender will come up from behind and look to tip the ball away from the offensive player (and hopefully into the hands of one of his teammates). From here, another player will pick up the loose ball and pass to a guard at half court. After the guard receives the ball, he will then look to dish it off to one of two wing players for a layup.
Also, coaches can add a 3-on-2 element to the drill when coming back down the court after the initial tip and turnover. If you want to take things a step further, you could also build it into a 4-on-3 and 5-on-4 drill as well.
Do you have a fast break or press-oriented drill that works wonders with your basketball team? Tell us about it in the comments below or e-mail us at email@example.com.
The previous clips can be seen on Championship Productions’ DVD “Don Showalter: Full-Court Trapping Defensive System.” To check out more videos in our basketball library highlighting pressure systems and defensive strategies, click here.
Take advantage of man-to-man mismatches on the offensive end of the floor with these proven set plays. Read through the breakdown of each play before seeing them carried out live on the basketball court in a 5-on-5 situation.
Quick Hitting Lob Play
Submitted by Les Wilson, Washington HS, Washington, IN
The set up: Player 1 has the ball up top. Players 2 and 5 are at opposite elbows, while players 4 and 3 are at opposite low blocks.
The action: From a 1-2-2 set, 2 and 3 break to the free throw line extended on their respective sides. Player 1 then passes to 3 and cuts to the ballside corner behind the three-point line.
The finish: From here, player 4 breaks wide to the weakside corner while 5 pops to the top. 3 passes to 5 who quickly reverses the ball to 2. As the pass is in the air and going towards player 2, player 3 quickly cuts up and sets a backscreen for 5. 5 curls around the screen and breaks hard toward the basket. Player 2 throws to 5 for a lob opportunity.
Set Play for a Mismatch
Submitted by Tom Reiter, Washington & Jefferson College, Washington, PA
This play incorporates spacing and takes advantage of a mismatch situation so an offense can make a quick-hitting offensive advantage.
The set up: Get in a 3-out, 2-low alignment, with 1 at the top of the key, 2 on the left side above the arc, and 3 on the right side above the arc, plus 4 on the baseline and 5 on the baseline (for spacing and isolation purposes).
The action: 1 dribbles up to the top of the key, passes to 2, and then runs to the ballside corner. 4 comes up to set a screen on the ball. As 2 dribbles off the screen, 1 cuts across the lane to screen for 5. 2 passes to 5 for a layup.
Options: If the post-up is not there, 4 should screen for 1 for a jump shot. 3 spots up on weakside for a possible skip pass from 2.
In this week’s Playbook Series, we highlight three proven defensive drills that focus on transition basketball. Competitive and effective at improving defensive recovery, these drills should become staples in your future practice plans.
Never Too Late Drill
Submitted by Will Mayer, Middletown North HS, Middletown, NJ
“Never too late” runs for three minutes before the offensive and defensive players switch off. A coach is on the sideline and inbounds the ball to either player 1 or player 2. Meanwhile, player X2 is starting at the hash mark, gets back on defense while X1, positioned on the opposite foul line, sprints in behind to provide catch-up defense in transition.
Look to put a scoring system in place where an offensive basket counts for one point and a defensive stop or turnover results in minus two points for the offensive team. After both teams have played offense for the three minutes, the team with the least amount of points must run laps.
Two Player Recovery Drill
This next transition drill uses the same time limits and scoring system as the previous drill. Player 1 begins the drill by passing to player 2. Player 2 then passes to player 3. Meanwhile 3 and 4 attack defender X1 in a 2-on-1 situation. X2 must sprint back as soon as X1 makes his or her pass and tries to provide defensive help while on transition.
The offense rotates after each possession in the following manner: 5 goes to 1’s spot, 1 to 2, 2 to 3, 3 to the end of 4’s line, and 4 to the end of 1’s line.
Breakdown drill for 2-2-1 Full Court Press
Submitted by Larry King, Binghamton University, Binghamton, NY
This breakdown drill enhances your team’s presses using groups of three players. To begin, there are three offensive players going against three defensive players playing over a full court. O1 starts in the right corner, while O2 and O3 are located at half court, one on each side of the floor. X1 is positioned on the foul line in the backcourt, x2 is at half court, and x3 is at the foul line in the front court.
Restrictions for the offense: O1 must take three dribbles before passing to either O2 or O3. O2 and O3 must catch the first pass in the front court. O2 and O3 cannot cross into the backcourt to catch a pass.
The drill begins with X1 passing the ball back to O1. X1 forces O1 up the right sideline and must prevent O1 from dribbling to the middle of the floor. At the same time, X1 and X2 are trying to trap O1 just before or just beyond half court. X3 is trying to steal the pass that O1 is trying to throw to O2 or O3. If the pass cannot be stolen, X3 must quickly get back under the basket ready to play 1-on-2 against O2 and O3 until X 1 and X2 recover and come back to play help defense.
The goal for the offense is to score in a fast break situation. If there’s no score, the play should evolve into a 3-on-3 contest.
In this behind-the-scenes look, we travel to Storrs, Connecticut for a glimpse inside a University of Connecticut women’s basketball practice. Follow along as head coach Geno Auriemma leads his squad though a number of team drills, including backdoor cuts and defensive zig zags.
With backdoor cuts, it’s essential to time these so we catch the ball and then throw a backdoor cut at the same time. For this particular drill, ball handlers should look to cross half court opposite of where we want to set up the offense, crossover, and then make our play before we reaching the other dotted line.
It only works if all three people work together effectively, so stay wide and spread the floor more. The wider you are, the better you will be. If you get wide, you will know immediately if you are being overplayed (especially if your opponent comes out beyond the three-point line).
To recap, one player dribbles up from half court, crosses over, and passes to a flashing player at the elbow. This player then immediately dishes off to a cutting wing player toward the hoop for a layup. There is also the option to dish back to the original ball handler for a layup or jumper.
Tips: Ball handlers must always follow their first pass. Also, make that cut so you can get the ball back for a shot or layup. Make the cut every time regardless of what your teammate ends up doing.
For this drill, players will go 1-on-1 down the court in zig zags. While the offense works on their ball handling, the defense must work on defensive slides and strong transition play. Do not just go through the motions. Don’t make this drill pointless with predictable movements. There is no point to it unless you do it exactly as you would in a game.
The defensive player should be taking the offensive player where they want without touching. To help, put your hands behind your back and use your feet to get where you need to go. Get your head right on the opposing player’s elbow. When you get to the lane, use your feet in order to turn the offense. Dictate where you want them to go.
Tips: Stay down low and always move your feet. Get your hands back. The offense should use this opportunity to work on ball handling. Don’t go so fast that you lose control. Stay balanced.