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PostPosted: 01 Dec 2015, 07:44 

Posts: 176
So here we are as sophomores. Since third grade we have taught the kids man defense. Now, for some reason, the kids are playing a 1 2 2 half court trap, which goes into a 1 2 2 zone. I thought it might have been a program wide switch, but varsity still plays man. So here are my questions:

1) Is it a good idea to play a defense they won't play next year?

2) How the heck to you play zone? Seriously, my kid stinks at it and I need to give him pointers because the coaches aren't doing it. He looks completely lost - bad angles to the ball and kind of in no-man's land. He isn't going to get any playing time until he figures this out. He isn't as quick as other ball players so he can't make up for a positioning mistake. He has to play smarter. But I feel many years "wasted" teaching man D.

How long do they stay "with their man?" For example, he's out on the wing guarding the man with the ball. Say the ball is dribbled down toward the corner, out of his "zone." Does he stay with him until the next player picks him up? Or just let him drive down there uncontested hoping the next guy picks him up.

Blocking out is difficult at best. What the best way to get rebounds?

When do they "put their hands up?" Coaches want their hands up and they are running around with their hands in the air. I have no clue how you can run with your hands in the air. After the game, their shoulders hurt.

Do you ever want to get up on your man and deny the pass into your zone? Or always play back?

Thanks.


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PostPosted: 01 Dec 2015, 08:03 
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Well the good news is that if you can play good to man D, you have a chance to play good zone D. All good defenses (zone and man) are based on man to man principles.

Now every zone varies and how the coach teaches the zone varies, so my first suggestion is to have your son ask the coach some of these questions. Being proactive and learning to communicate effectively is an important life skill to learn.

Getting some zone experience at this point can be a good thing. It's good to be well rounded and learn different defenses/offenses when you become more advanced in high school.

Now with that said, if I was varsity coach that ran all man, I would not want my sophomores running all zone. But that's just my opinion.

You know, I just read your questions again and they will be best answered by the coach. I have my opinions but it could be different than the coach.

For example, if you have the guy on the right wing... you play great man on ball defense... pressuring. Then when moving out of your area, make sure you verbally bump/switch with a teammate. You basically stay with him until you are sure you bump him to someone else.

Another option is to double team those situations instead of bumping.

Have your son learn the 1-2-2 slides (aka responsibilities and coverages) from the coach. 1-2-2 zone can have different slides. Some of more match up based and others are more area based.

For quickness, it will just take time and effort to learn these slides. Study game film, talk with the coach, etc. Maybe if the coach follows a certain 1-2-2 zone you can buy that DVD. But it's just like man to man... move on the PASS not the catch. Move on the flight of the ball, stay low in your stance, sprint to spots (don't shuffle), etc. All man to man principles.

If you have more questions, let us know. This is a tough one to give specific answers.

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PostPosted: 01 Dec 2015, 22:46 

Posts: 892
JeffHaefner wrote:
Well the good news is that if you can play good to man D, you have a chance to play good zone D. All good defenses (zone and man) are based on man to man principles.
So true. I'll take a good M2M D player all day long in a zone defense.

golfman25 wrote:
1)Is it a good idea to play a defense they won't play next year?
I'm with Jeff here, I probably wouldn't do it, but that's the coach's decision.

Quote:
2) How the heck to you play zone? Seriously, my kid stinks at it and I need to give him pointers because the coaches aren't doing it. He looks completely lost - bad angles to the ball and kind of in no-man's land. He isn't going to get any playing time until he figures this out. He isn't as quick as other ball players so he can't make up for a positioning mistake. He has to play smarter. But I feel many years "wasted" teaching man D.
The coach should be explaining the 1-2-2 zone and its purpose. If it's a 1/2 court trapping defense, the #1 player is trying to force the ball handler coming up to half court to a trapping zone on either side of the court. The #2 and #3 are combining with #1 to trap the dribbler if possible or force a bad pass. The #4 and #5 look to steal a bad pass if possible. Every coach will have their tweaks on that zone, but they should be explaining it.

I disagree on "wasted" teaching of man D. His background with M2M should coming in handy on this 1-2-2 trapping part of that defense. A good zone looks like M2M, it's not just kids shuffling their feet and moving slowly inside a designated area.

Quote:
How long do they stay "with their man?" For example, he's out on the wing guarding the man with the ball. Say the ball is dribbled down toward the corner, out of his "zone." Does he stay with him until the next player picks him up? Or just let him drive down there uncontested hoping the next guy picks him up.
Depends on the coach and what he wants to accomplish. If the coach is playing more aggressively, he may tell your son to set up a trap in the corner, which means other players would need to cheat in a bit and cover the holes in the zone. All that should be coming from his coach though. Most coaches will walk their players through basic "what ifs" in their zone defense which includes where player's are supposed to be in certain situations.

Quote:
Blocking out is difficult at best. What the best way to get rebounds?
You probably won't want to hear this, but the best way to get rebounds is block out.

Quote:
When do they "put their hands up?" Coaches want their hands up and they are running around with their hands in the air. I have no clue how you can run with your hands in the air. After the game, their shoulders hurt.
The point of the "hands in the air" is to create a scene on the court that makes it intimidating to pass. If you take 5 kids in a zone and have them put their hands down, then have them put them up, the difference is noticeable. You're reducing passing lanes. It's tough to keep the hands in the air constantly, especially for younger players.

Quote:
Do you ever want to get up on your man and deny the pass into your zone? Or always play back?
The coach would need to clarify how he wants his kids to play. A lot could depend on the other team's strengths and weaknesses. If they have a hot 3 pt shooter, I'd want my point out higher, if they have good inside players, I'd want to deny the paint as much as possible.

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PostPosted: 14 Dec 2015, 20:27 

Posts: 176
The good news is that they scrapped the zone. Much better defense now.


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PostPosted: 02 May 2016, 13:49 

Posts: 62
Interesting tips, thank you!


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