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Archives by Tag 'Set Plays'

Quick Hitters: 3 Proven Inbound Plays Used by the Pros

By adam.warner - Last updated: Wednesday, May 16, 2012

In search of a few more inbounds plays this season to mix up your basketball playbook? Look no further than these three set plays used by the Golden State Warriors, Chicago Bulls, and New Jersey Nets during the 2008-09 NBA campaign.

NBA advanced scout Noel Gillespie gives you exclusive access to a variety of inbounds plays designed to give wide-open looks — particularly for late game situations or quick scoring opportunities. Each play is discussed on the court before run at full speed. To finish up, each play ends live 5-on-5.

Golden State Need 3

The Set-Up: Patience is the key to this particular sideline out of bounds play. The big man starts in the middle of the foulline area. A small guard starts up at the top of the key. A second guard or small forward begins on the opposite wing and above the three-point line. Meanwhile, another big forward starts near the low block.

The Finish: First, the low block forward circles around the big man at the line and heads to the opposite corner. The wing players follow just behind the low block forward and then cut to the near corner. The guard up top comes in and screens the center at the free throw line. The big guy will then pop up top for a three-point attempt. This forces a switch for the defense as there’s now a small on a big.


Chicago Starburst

The Set-Up: Player 1 starts on the opposite low block. Player 2 begins just inside the top of the key. Player 3 is just to the right of the top of the key. Player 4 is just to the left of the top of the key. Player 5 inbounds the ball.

The Action: Player 1 starts things off by coming up and catching the ball up top. Player 3 cuts across to the near corner. Player 2 steps up and sets a screen for the near forward closest to the inbounder. Player 4 comes off the screen and heads to the far corner. Now the center screens down for Player 1 and that big comes up and gets the pass. The inbounder (should be a guard) then follows the ball and there’s a pass right back to him/her. The big man circles around the guard as the guard penetrates and gets the entire lane to operate. You can penetrate and dish or take it straight to the rim.


New Jersey Need 2

The Set-Up: Two players are stacked at the nearside low block. Get another player set up on the near wing (just in front of the inbounder). Finally, have another player (preferably a guard) start off at the top of the key.

The Action: The bottom stack player starts by cutting to the near corner as a decoy. The inbounder should fake a pass to him. Meanwhile, the nearside player up top cuts across and sets a screen for the top of the key guard. This top of the key guard then comes off the pick and cuts straight to the ball looking for the pass. Next, the player who just set the screen for the top guard comes down and cuts off of a backscreen set by the top stack player. After the top stack player makes this pick, he cuts backside for a lob at the rim.


The previous clips can all be seen on Championship Productions’ DVD “25 Game-Winning In-Bound Plays From the Pros” featuring Noel Gillespie. To check out more videos featuring set plays, visit our extensive DVD catalog.

Tom Izzo: Proven Tips & Set Plays for Deadball Situations

By adam.warner - Last updated: Wednesday, March 21, 2012

By consistently winning the battle of deadball situations, Michigan State head basketball coach Tom Izzo believes teams can add three to four victories to their win total each season. This area is often overlooked by many coaches but can really pay major dividends for a program. Take advantage of inbound plays, jump balls, and missed free throws this season and find creative ways to attack your opponent.

In this week’s team concepts feature, Coach Izzo reveals many of his proven strategies along with two effective sideline out-of-bounds plays. Izzo truly believes that many of these tips and strategies have played a key role in his program improving from an NIT team and into a NCAA tournament mainstay.

Two Sideline Out-of-Bounds Plays: Overview

Coach Izzo uses these sideline out-of-bounds plays after timeouts and late in games. So why exactly are they such a big deal? Well, when players know they are coming out with a play, it makes them think and focus a little more. After time outs, some guys think it’s time for their shot. For Coach Izzo, it eventually got to be a confidence thing. That’s when the team started winning the close games.

It’s about the attention to detail after a time out or dead ball situation. If you do it and believe it and sell it, it will be helpful. You can come up with three or four more wins during a season and see that these things really make a difference.

The objectives here are simple: score points, punch it inside, go after a player in foul trouble, or post up. Always carry a purpose.


“One” Play

Play Set-up: With “One“, you’ll need your best swingman taking it out of bounds. Three players are stacked at the top of the key facing toward the opposite hoop. The remaining player starts down low at the near low block. Also, your point guard should be a good shooter in this situation.

Play Movements: Now anytime we can get the ball into low post, we will look to do so. First, the low block player should act lazy to the defense and then break hard to the ball. Next, the PG in the stack nearest to the ball loops around the stack and to the opposite wing. Once the ball is passed in to the former low block plater, the inbounder cuts to the hoop close to the player with the ball and looks for a handoff & drive to the hoop.

The remaining two guys in the stack then set a double screen for the far wing player. The wing player comes off the screen and the player low with the ball looks to hit him for a jump shot.

Meanwhile, the closest pick guy slips backdoor to the basket, and the furthest pick guy then spots up on the wing for a three-pointer opportunity.

Tip: This play is great for a late three-pointer at the end of the game or quarter. The options are there for inside and outside chances. Remember, timing is important here.


“Two” Play

Play Set-up: Similar to before, start three players in a stack at the top of the key with your point guard in the middle. Also like before, have another player start out at the low near block. Make sure this player is one of your top shooters.

Play Movements: First, your goal should be to get the ball to the point guard. We’re also looking to post a player and then get a quality jump shot.

In the stack, the guard pops out and receives the pass. He immediately dribbles to the opposite wing area. The passer then cuts toward the hoop and then posts up on the far side block. The two remaining stack players set a double screen for the low block guy. He comes off the screen and sprints up top for a jumper. There should also be a “slip and space tactic” with the two screeners, similar to the first play where one slips backdoor and the other creates space and gets in position for a shot.


The previous clips can be seen in Championship Productions’ DVD “Tom Izzo: Winning Dead Ball Situations.” To check out additional videos featuring special situations and inbound plays, head over to our basketball library.

2 Versatile Plays to Beat Man-to-Man Defenses

By adam.warner - Last updated: Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Looking to add a few wrinkles to the basketball playbook this season? With defensive techniques becoming more complex and diverse, it’s key that coaches are equipped with a variety of creative set plays they can call upon for any offensive situation. Be sure to read the following offensive plays designed to attack man-to-man defenses. Check out a diagram of each play to see how they should be conducted before watching the play simulated live by a real team on the basketball court.

Hoosier for Three Points

Submitted by Eddie Sutton, Former Head Coach at Oklahoma State, Stillwater, Oklahoma

The Set-up: The point guard starts up top with the ball. The player you want shooting should be on the right wing. Your two best rebounders should be on the left-hand side of the court, with one on the left block and another on the left wing.

The Action: The point guard dribbles to the right-hand side of the floor. The low block player on the strong side pops up and screens for the strong-side wing player. The player on the wing uses the screen and breaks toward the basket but continues to cut along the baseline and then cuts around staggered screens set by the two weakside players. He pops up behind the opposite three-point line.

The Finish: The PG throws a skip pass to the player coming off the double screen and proceeds to shoot the three-pointer. The two low screeners should also be in good position to crash the boards.


Man Offense to Create a Mismatch

Submitted by Greg Goodwin, Former Girls’ Head Coach at Absegami High School, Absecon, New Jersey

The Set-up: 1 starts up top with the ball. 3 and 4 are on opposite elbows and 5 and 2 are on opposite low blocks (5 and 3 weakside).

The Action: 1 dribbles to a spot just about opposite of 5. 2 screen across hoping for a switch by the defenders. 1 looks for 5 coming across the baseline for a possible post-up scoring opportunity.

The Finish: If 5 doesn’t get the ball, 3 and 4 set staggered screens for 2, who comes to the top of the key looking for a jumper or drive to the hoop. If 2 doesn’t have the outside shot, 1 and 3 set down screens for 4 and 5.


The previous clips can be seen on Championship Productions’ DVD “Over 60 Plays to Attack Man-to-Man Defenses” by Winning Hoops. To check out more plays and drills in the Winning Hoops collection, visit our exclusive basketball library.

3 Fast Break Plays to Improve Your Transition Offense

By adam.warner - Last updated: Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Current Texas head women’s basketball coach and former Duke coach Gail Goestenkors is a big proponent of the fast break offense. She prefers her teams to score via the fast break as much as possible and believes that an effective transition game can directly translate to success on the court.

This week, learn three versatile fast break plays that Goestenkors has implemented successfully with her teams over the years. Watch as the Texas coach explains each play and assists with player movements before they are fully simulated by a team on the basketball court.

Fast Break Overview: Carolina Break

In the first play, there’s a point guard at the top of the key with the ball. There’s a guard in the right corner, a low post player on the same side low block, a farside wing player at the free throw line extended, and another forward up top. Take note of this set-up. The spacing is similar in each of these three plays. In this case, this offense is up against a zone defense.

First, the ball is passed to the corner wing player. If the wing has an open lane to the basket, they should drive to the hoop. If he can’t, he should go to the baseline because we want the post defense to be low side. If the post defense is high side, look to work the ball to the inside.

From here, you can get into the “Carolina Break.” Once you get the defense low side, don’t just look to pass it back up through the point guard. Instead, look to skip to the high post because you have a seal and potential easy layup for the post player. Remember, “SKIP, SEAL, IN.” Keep the opposite side clear. The low-post player should remain on the strong side until the ball is reversed. If the defender denies the outside wing player, go backdoor.


Once the ball is reversed to the opposite wing player, the low post player will now cut to the strong-side post. Next, the corner player sets a back screen for the high-post player, who cuts off the screen and has the option for a lob pass down low. If he’s not open, there’s a pass to the new high-post player (i.e. the former corner player). If that player doesn’t get a lob pass, there’s a seal and he will look to get a low pass in for a right-handed layup.

Key: These fast break plays allow you to transition into any offensive set.


Meanwhile, you can run two different breaks depending on who the trail post is. Goestenkors likes to run this break quite often for her three-point shooters. When they trail in, the defense must respect them. They will also come up to defend her. When the ball is reversed, there’s a great angle available for a back screen.


Notice when the ball is reversed to the wing player. Now instead of the back screen, we are setting a down screen with the high-post player. The corner player pops up top off this screen, receives the ball, and the two post players open up. The player with the ball up top looks immediately inside to his two options.

Depending on personnel, the point guard should know whether to call Basic or Down (usually depends on who the trail post is).



If we have a shooter that’s really hot, we go into “Double.” It’s just like Down, but there’s a double screen. On the reverse, the PG and high-post player set a double screen (staggered) for the corner player, who receives the ball up top. The two low players now open up and look for the inside feeds. The corner player can also shoot the three-pointer up top if he’s open from the double screen.

The previous clips can be seen on Championship Productions’ DVD “Gail Goestenkors: Transition Offense & Quick Hitters.” To check out more transition offense-related videos, visit our basketball library.

3 Game-Winning Sideline Inbound Plays Used by the Pros

By adam.warner - Last updated: Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Hoping to add a few new inbounds plays this season to spice up your playbook? Check out these trio of plays used by the Houston Rockets, Toronto Raptors, and Boston Celtics during the 2008-09 NBA campaign. NBA Advanced Scout Noel Gillespie gives you exclusive access to a variety of effective in-bounds plays designed to net points — particularly for late game situations or late-clock scoring opportunities.

Houston Need 3

The Set-Up: The 1 guard or shooter starts with the ball out of bounds on the sideline. One forward is at the far-side elbow, the other guard is at the nearside elbow, the big man is at the top of the key, and the other forward is at the low near block.

The Action: The farside elbow player cuts to the near corner, then the low block guy cuts to the far opposite corner. The ball is passed in to the player in the near corner. Then the near elbow guy cuts to the top of the key and replaces the big guy. The big guy comes down and sets a screen for the inbounder just to the left of the top of the key. The inbounder cuts around this screen to the top of the key. The corner player hits the inbounder with a pass at the top of the key for a shot.


Toronto Starburst

The Set-Up: A guard takes the ball out of bounds. Two players start on opposite side wings (guard and forward) just off the top of the key. The big man is just above the foul line and another forward starts down low in the middle of the paint.

The Action: The big man sets a back pick for the nearside high wing player. That wing player will cut to the opposite corner. The big man will then screen for the 3 man on the opposite high wing area. That 3 man will then cut to the near corner. Then the big man will set another pick, this time for the guard down low and that player will come up to the top of the key.

The inbounder passes to the guard up top. After that pass, the inbounder cuts down towards the near low block and around the low side of a double screen there set by 5 and 4. The inbounder cuts below and then up to the far wing area, receives the pass from 2, and takes the shot.


Boston Need 2

The Set-Up: The inbounder (forward) starts on the sideline. Another forward starts up at the top of the key. One guard is on the opposite wing. A second guard is just off the low near block and the big man is at the near elbow.

The Action: The elbow player comes down and sets a screen for the low block player. The top of the key player then switches with the wing player (trading spots) while the big man sets the down screen. The low block player curls around the pick and receives a lob from the inbounder for a quick layup.


The previous plays can be seen on Championship Productions’ DVD “25 Game-Winning In-Bound Plays From the Pros” featuring Noel Gillespie. To check out more play-oriented videos, visit our extensive DVD catalog.


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