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PostPosted: 30 Jun 2013, 22:12 

Posts: 5
Hello everyone, I'm coaching a girls team and we're in the midst of an 17-and-under basketball competition.

I have scouted our next opponent.
Strengths:
Shooting long shots (3 pointers and long 2s) and passing
Aggressive defense leading to easy fast break points
Breaks zone presses very easily due to their skill set and speed
Employs a full court man to man press to force turnovers and easy baskets

Weaknesses:
Lack of size. All players are short (all about guard size) so rebounding is a big problem for them. However, they always seem to take their own long rebounds resulting from the shots they take.
Tends to struggle when the game slows down and they start missing their shots.
Shot selection - rarely see them penetrating the defense to get easy baskets near rim.
Their coach doesn't use his bench players often, main players play long minutes. However the main players are fit.

I watched their game yesterday which they (Team A) lost to a bigger sized team (Team B) who employed a 2-3 defense. The game was pretty even (The score was slightly in favor of Team A) at halftime. In the third and fourth quarters, Team B started to get a lot of offensive rebounds and points close to the rim while Team A started to miss their shots (Even though they moved the ball beautifully and got an open 3 point shot most of the time). However it was only until the last 5 minutes of the 4th quarter when Team B finally started to pull away and Team A caved in. (How they players lasted that long is beyond me)


I was just wondering whether I can get some opinions on defending my next opponent (Team A). Is it a bad idea to use my substitutes to play a full court man to man on them to tire them out first? Should I rather play a man-to-man defense or a zone defense? How can I counter their full court presses?
My team has at most 2 good rebounders with height, which is quite worrying for me because if we play guard for guard against them, we will definitely lose.
I'm open to any ideas - even junk defenses and all! (: Thanks in advance! Apologies for the long post!


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PostPosted: 01 Jul 2013, 18:57 
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Tough question to answer without knowing your offense,defense, what your good at, etc

I would simply do what I always do. Figure out how to commit fewer turnovers than the other team, kill them on the boards, and play extremely tough defense that does not give up lay ups and contests all shots (trying to take shooters out of rhythm and get them rushing shots).

Teams that rely on outside shooting get really frustrated if they can't get open looks and have to rush the shot just a little bit.

I have my own system of doing that but it's something we work on all season. You'll have to run with what your good at and try to play your game, not theirs.

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PostPosted: 01 Jul 2013, 19:51 

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Hey Jeff,

Thanks for the answer. Could you be more specific regarding what you would do if you are facing such an opponent with your team? Man-to-man defense or zone defense etc? What is your defensive system?
Thanks.


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PostPosted: 01 Jul 2013, 20:03 
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We only play man to man defense and get really good at it. We have an ebook about the defense and Jim Huber's DVDs, which is almost exactly what we do.

I wouldn't really change anything when facing a team like this except making sure we identify shooters. I might shade all the shooters a little bit more but first I'm going to make sure guys are anticipating and moving as the pass, not the catch. So generally there is no adjustment... Just making sure we sharply execute our normal fundamentals.

With that said, Al Marshall runs 2-3 zone that is just as effective. They get really good at it and he's a good teacher. You don't get many good looks against them inside or outside.

If you need more info let me know.

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PostPosted: 01 Jul 2013, 21:14 

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Yes please! I do need more info as this is my first experience coaching. Being a player is so much more different from being a coach.

Could I get more information about this strategy of shading the shooters? Also I'm afraid my girls will overcommit to the shooters, and the opponent will just penetrate and get easy layups. My goal is to let the opponents take long shots that are decently contested..


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PostPosted: 01 Jul 2013, 21:19 

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Also, besides the 'Line' play, how do i break a full court man-to-man press? I'm looking for something that can be easily taught to my players instead of the Line play because I feel that the play's success depends on how good the players are at reading the defense.


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PostPosted: 02 Jul 2013, 06:50 
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Shading a shooter just means when you are off the ball you're a step closer to the shooter. For example, when 2 passes away we normally have the defender put one foot on the rim line. If he's playing a great shooter, we'll shade the shooter and have 1 foot in the lane and 1 foot outside the lane (so they're one step close to the shooter). We only do this on the really good 3pt shooters. If you had to do this on all 5 players you might give up too many lay ups and inside shots.

This DVD series shows everything we do defensively.
http://breakthroughbasketball.com/pr/huber-defense.html

To avoid over committing to shooters you need to practice good close outs:
http://www.breakthroughbasketball.com/defense/keys-close-outs.html

Here's the press breaker that I always use. It's simple and fits right into our transition / fast break (players go to the same spots).
http://www.breakthroughbasketball.com/offense/press-breaker.html

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PostPosted: 02 Jul 2013, 13:03 

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josephsim26 wrote:
Strengths:Shooting long shots (3 pointers and long 2s) and passing
Good close outs, make them change their shot.
Quote:
Aggressive defense leading to easy fast break points
Strong passes, strong dribbling, protect the ball. Emphasize that your guards will need to stay back on defense to help prevent those fast breaks.
Quote:
Breaks zone presses very easily due to their skill set and speed
Wouldn't press then unless you've practiced it and the girls know what they're doing.
Quote:
Employs a full court man to man press to force turnovers and easy baskets
Choose a press break and practice it as much as you can before the next game.
Quote:
Lack of size. All players are short (all about guard size) so rebounding is a big problem for them. However, they always seem to take their own long rebounds resulting from the shots they take.
Emphasize blocking out this week in practice.
Quote:
Tends to struggle when the game slows down and they start missing their shots.
Control the pace of the game. Slow it down and make them play out of their fast break high paced mode.
Quote:
Shot selection - rarely see them penetrating the defense to get easy baskets near rim.
Good close outs and blocking out.

I wouldn't do anything majorly different than what you know how to do well. Changing to a whole different defensive scheme for this one team is probably not a wise move. Sounds like you just need to tweak what you have and pick a few fundamentals to have them focus on. Teaching a proper close out and a proper block out.

I'd explain to the girls exactly what you posted here and how you plan to deal with it. If you take away the surprise element, the girls will be expecting it and know what to do which adds a calmer effect against a team that likes to run and gun. Slowing the pace down and controlling the momentum should be in your favor from what you've described.

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PostPosted: 02 Jul 2013, 16:49 
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Jeff and Rob gave you some great ideas.

I agree with doing what you do best..... take them out of what they like to do best ... NO open looks for 3s / long 2s. Hand in thier face and block out after the shot... and then go after it. Like you said, long shots usually have long rebounds, anticipate that.

Make sure your help defense is excellent for this game.

If it is a m2m full court press, get the ball to your best ball handler and clear out... let her bring the ball up.... you can take the ball to her weak side for a bit and then crossover and use the strong hand the rest of the way.... if the defender tries to chase you down from behind, dribble in her path.

If they are all guards and you have two good big players... work the ball inside... be patient, slow the game down, take them out of what they like to do best.

I don't think I would press and uptempo the game, seems like that would help them to do what they like to do.... but, here is one thing.... IF You have some sort of zone press.... just float in front of them and make them slow down to figure out what you are doing.... trapping or???


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PostPosted: 02 Jul 2013, 20:21 

Posts: 5
Thank you very much for all these help!

Coach Sar, do you mean doing a zone press for the sake of taking seconds of the clock, not to force turnovers? So they have less time once they settle into their half court offense?


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