Ages: All Ages Youth Middle School High School+
Purpose of the Drill:
This drill teaches several fundamental skills, but does so in a fun, competitive way. The drill is designed to improve each player's defensive posture and technique, reward effort, aggressiveness and quickness, and create offensive and defensive transition situations.
- Divide the players into two teams.
- Teams go behind the basket, with one team lining up out-of-bounds, lane line extended, and the other team lining up the same way on the opposite side of the lane.
- All players should face the court.
- The first player in each line should get into a defensive stance out-of-bounds and have his inside foot just behind the intersection of the lane line and baseline.
- Coach yells, "Go" one, two or three times.
- With each "Go" the next player in line on each team steps up to the baseline, assumes a defensive stance, and completes a defensive slide out of bounds to the intersection of the sideline and baseline, turns still facing the court, and continues the defensive slide up the side line, to half court.
- At the intersection of half court and the side line, the player back peddles along the mid-court line to where it intersects with the center circle.
- As the first player starts to back-peddle to the center circle, the coach will toss a ball somewhere in the half court.
- Upon touching the intersection of half court and the center circle, the two opposing players will attempt to win possession of the loose ball and the winner will make an offensive move toward the basket.
- The player who did not secure possession becomes the defensive player.
- If the coach yelled "Go" more than one time, then the first player who secures the ball will need to make a decision to take the ball to the basket or wait until his other player or players finish their slide and join him in the play.
- Note: Even with possession, ALL team members in the play need to complete the slide and back-peddle to the center circle.
- Both teams will be trying for possession of the ball, so the team who does not secure the ball will have to transition quickly to man-to-man defense.
- The offensive team will attempt to employ a 2-1, or 3-2 fast-break if they have the advantage, or attempt to score in the half court if the defense stops the fast-break.
- Play stops when either a basket is scored or the defense gains possession.
- Players on the court immediately take their place back in line and get ready for the next "Go" from the coach.
- First team to 5 baskets wins.
Points of Emphasis:
- Doing each part of the drill well - One coach may want to watch the defensive slide and back-peddle to make sure of proper technique and that players do not cut corners.
- Emphasizing Transitions - when a player or team does not gain possession, they immediately have to identify who they are defending and communicate with other players joining them on defense. Conversely, in effect the offensive team has caused a turnover in the backcourt and need to make quick decisions to take it to the basket with a 1-0, 2-1, or 3-2 advantage or set up.
- Aggressiveness, conditioning and quickness - the key is to gain possession of the loose ball so those players who are quick and will go for a loose ball will help their team, as well as the trailing players sprinting to either fill a lane or get in front of an offensive player to stop the fast break.
- The coach can speed the play by setting a time to score and quickly getting the next group in play, adding a significant conditioning element to the drill.
- Winning team could get an incentive - additional points in the scrimmage, less sprints at the end of practice, etc. Typically just winning is a motivator enough.
- If even numbers, attempt to match up opposing players based on quickness so they are reaching the ball at a similar time.
- Rotate how many players participate in the drill at a time by saying "Go" one, two or three times.
- Teams could lose a point for not staying in a good defensive slide stance to encourage proper technique and not cutting corners.
- The ball can be tossed closer to a slower player to even out speed discrepancies.
- Extra points could be awarded for completing a part of the drill that compliments other instruction. For example, points could be awarded for: each give-and-go, a defensive player drawing an offensive foul, bigs beating a guard to the ball, a successful pick-and-roll regardless of if the basket was made, etc.
- The Coach can choose to have the play end when the defense gains possession or continue 1-1, 2-2, or 3-3 play by having the defense clear the ball to the foul line and becoming the offensive team.