5 Quick Hitters for Your Motion Offense

By design, a motion offense is supposed to be free form and interpretive. That does not mean it should be random or hap-hazard.

Here are some quick hitter entries you can use to enter into your motion. A quick hitter is a play with one pass and maybe one or two cuts that are designed to get your scorer an open, early shot. When finished, it will leave your players in good position to continue your motion offense if you don't get that early shot.

These cuts can be run out of any set and generate any motion. The sets that I have used here are solely because they had to be illustrated somehow. You should adapt these plays to sets and offenses you are comfortable with.

Instructions for Set Up

This is the initial set when beginning your motion offense.

Instructions for 2-5 Cross Screen

  1. Player 3 steps up for a ball screen.
  2. Player 1 dribbles off the ball screen.
  3. Player 2 screens for Player 5, timing it so Player 5 arrives at the block as Player 1 brings the ball to the wing.
  1. Player 1 looks to the low post.
  2. Player 4 screens for Player 2.
  3. Player 2 cuts to the wing.
  4. Player 1 reverses to Player 3 for a pop out jumper.
  5. Player 3 passes to Player 2 off the screen for a shot.
  6. Offense then continues into motion offense.

Instructions for 2-5 Diagonal Screen

  1. Player 4 steps up to ball screen.
  2. Player 1 dribbles off ball screen.
  3. Player 2 sets a diagonal screen for Player 5.
  4. Player 5 cuts off screen into low post, timing his cut so he arrives in the low post as the ball is arriving at the wing.
  1. Players 2 and 4 set stagger screens for Player 3.
  2. Player 3 comes off the screens.
  3. Player 1 passes to Player 5 in the low post (1st option).
  4. Player 1 passes to Player 3 for shot (2nd option).

Instructions for UCLA Cut into ball screen

  1. Player 1 passes to Player 2.
  2. Player 5 steps up to set a back screen for Player 1.
  3. Player 1 makes a UCLA cut to the low post.
  1. Player 5 steps out to ball screen for Player 2.
  2. Player 2 dribbles over ball screen.
  3. Players 3 and 4 set stagger screens for Player 1.
  4. Player 1 cuts off stagger screens.
  • 1st Option- Player 1 looks to score.
  • 2nd Option- Player 1 looks to screen and roll with Player 5.
  • 3rd Option- Player 2 passes to Player 1 off the stagger screens.

Instructions for Zipper Screen

  1. Player 1 dribbles to the wing.
  2. Player 2 sizzler cuts to the top.
  3. Player 3 flashes to the corner.
  1. Player 1 passes to Player 2.
  2. Player 4 steps up to ball screen, timing it so he arrives to screen as Player 2 is catching the ball.
  • Option 1- Player 2 comes off the ball screen looking to score.
  • Option 2- Player 2 penetrates and kicks out to Player 3 for a shot.

Instructions for 3-Special

  1. Player 3 steps out to ball screen for Player 1.
  2. Player 4 screens for Player 2.
  3. Player 1 dribbles off the ball screen.
  1. Immediately after the ball screen,Player 5 flare screens for Player 3.
  2. Player 3 cuts off the flare screen.
  • Option 1- Player 1 looks for Player 3 over the top.
  • Option 2- Player 1 looks for Player 2 in the corner.

In each of these quick hitters, players space out to appropriate spots for the type of motion offense (5-out, 4-out, 3-out, 2-out).

Related Products & Articles

How to Develop a High Scoring Motion Offense

Priceless Offensive Coaching Tips and a Simple Yet Effective High/Low Offensive System

Do You Recommend the Motion Offense to Youth Teams?


Most Likes First   Oldest First   Newest First

Ken says:
9/12/2012 at 7:32:36 AM

KC -

Everybody wants to be like "Mike" :-)

That's ok, what you have to do is sell them on the fact that even Mike didn't win until he got the rest of the team involved. Phil Jackson did a great job of selling him on this.

We always used this at the beginning of the year - hold your open hand out.... and ask them IF they would have more power hitting someone with that (the make a fist) or this?
The open hand is the individual and the closed fist is the TEAM. Together, EVERYONE Achieves MORE!!

You can search the net for all sorts of motivational sayings around teamwork.

You already identified some of your problems, FUNDAMENTALS... that has to be your first goal. As you watch them, write down everything that you believe needs improvment, then that goes into your practice plans to make them better, IF you cant pass, catch or dribble the ball, you cant play.

If you look at the left side of this page, there are many sections that have drills, offenses, defenses etc.

You can start at this one http://www.breakthroughbasketball.com/fundamentals/basketballfundamentals.html
You will find a lot of drills in the Player Development section.

I hope this helps you. If you need more info just ask.


KC says:
9/12/2012 at 7:04:34 AM


From what I gather talking to them a couple times during sign up every kid wants to be the playmaker on the team and are extremely cocky about their game. How can I find the right position for each kid. They all have talent but from watching them play a couple times they lack in the fundamentals. But they are eager to learn. I guess what I wanna know what would be a good way to start practice and what drills will benefit them the most and improve their game. Growing up I had a great coach who passed away not too long ago and he is who I went to for advice on my softball team but given the situation I can't go asking for advice and trying to remember all the drills the benefit me the most growing up isn't as easy to remember as I thought it would be.


Ken says:
9/11/2012 at 4:56:53 PM

I'm not sure what you are looking for? Is this an AAU team or? What are your goals for these kids?

If you are talking DEFENSE... I'm a m2m advocate and OFFENSIVELY If I were you (and these kids have any talent at all) I would run an Open Post motion... keep it simple.
There is a lot more to the game than that .... inbounds plays, how to break presses, full and half etc.

We can give you a lot of suggestions but If I were you I would go to the high school coach and ask for help. Or maybe one of his assistants could help you.

Set some goals for the team - then make sure you make some good practice plans so you can achieve them. Again, talking to someone in person can help you a lot.

Good luck and IF you have some specific questions, fire away.


KC says:
9/11/2012 at 2:29:22 PM


I appreciate the advice but I''''m the head coach and my nephews my assistant coach my dad is just a head of the organization but I just don''''t know which direction to go as far as coaching is concerned as for my nephew he does have some experience as well in the game but neither of us have actually coach this age group before I have coach basketball before but I coached a much younger age group I believe it was 4-6 . But that was some time ago.


Ken says:
9/11/2012 at 9:29:53 AM

KC -

I take it your dad has some experience doing this. Follow his lead, become a student of the game and learn as much as you can. The kids will know right away IF you know the game or not.

IF you have coached before then you are still ahead of these kids... make sure it stays that way. Know what your dad wants to accomplish and works towards that goal.

As for the kids themselves, treat them fairly and with respect, they are almost young men now. Let them know that you care about them, more than just as a Bball player.

When there are 2 coaches its kind of a good guy / bad guy relationship. Listen to them when they have complaints or problems, explain to them what they need to do to solve the problem and let them move on.

Remember that you are the assistant and your dad is the head coach, you need to be loyal to him even if you disagree with something. You can always talk about things after practice and give some suggestions, bottom line, he still makes the final decisions. NEVER let the players see that you disagree with him.



KC says:
9/11/2012 at 9:19:28 AM

Any advice for a first-time coach. I am helping out my dad with his non-profit we just finished softball and now we r doing basketball. It's my first time coaching this age group (15-17) any advice ?


alex santos says:
6/21/2012 at 1:39:46 AM

give us more quick hitters!


Eric Henry says:
8/4/2011 at 11:52:27 AM

one more option to the UCLA play (i know these are quick hitters but just thought i would throw it out there for you). After 2 passes to 1 off the double screen-4 and 3 can then double screen across the lane for 5. This i accually to a T the offense we run from time to time that i think was put together by Rick Majarus at Utah.


razvan says:
4/20/2011 at 2:37:41 AM

Thank you for the plays,


Griffin Ligare says:
4/13/2011 at 3:29:20 AM

Thank you for the plays, they are simple but very effective!


Show More

Leave a Comment
Email (not published)
Six minus three is equal to?  (Prevents Spam)
 Load New Question
Leave this Blank