How was your defense this season? If you found yourself trying multiple approaches to improve but with minimal result, I suggest you stop and focus on these four simple concepts from PGC Director Tyler Coston.
1. Help-Defense is a Decision, Not a Position
The best defenders can easily answer these questions:
- Who owns the person with the basketball?
- Who owns the person I am guarding?
- How much ground can I cover?
2. Paint The Floor
Most defensive players stay in a 6-foot box. Imagine your feet are painted and you need to cover the entire floor with footprints. Cover more ground and be more active.
3. Help Across, Not Up
Anytime you ‘help up’ toward the basketball, you lose sight of the person you’re guarding. Stay perpendicular to your opponent, keep them in your line-of-sight, and help across (not up). This will lead to more contested passes and shorter rebound recovery.
4. Take Away Their Favorite Shots and Moves
Every player has something they’re best at, so make them do something else! If they’re a shooter, make them a driver. If they’re a driver, make them a shooter. Make the game difficult.
Attacking a Zone Defense
One of the most important skills an offense can possess is knowing how to properly attack a zone defense. The following three tips will put you in a position to continuously threaten the zone and keep the defense scrambling.
Reminder: Quick ball movement isn’t necessarily as important as moving the ball to the most dangerous spots.
1) Engage Two Defenders (E2)
If you can occupy two defenders, the offense immediately gains a 4-on-3 advantage.
Think of it as “engaging” two defenders instead of “marrying” them. By being engaged, you can still get the ball to one of your teammates. Once “married,” your options are cut off by defensive pressure and you can no longer exploit the advantage.
Also remember, you need to be prepared to make the pass before the defenders can gain control of the situation.
2) Form Triangles
Most players stand in one spot, but good players know to make an equilateral triangle by standing between two defenders.
This puts you in a position of strength, because both defenders will be forced to come forward.
The effect will be a zone scrambling to guard each pass, making it harder for them to communicate and close out.
3)Puncture The Middle
By puncturing the middle of the zone, you’re able to obtain one of three possible outcomes:
- A great shot for yourself.
- A great drop-off to a teammate in the post.
- A kickout to an open teammate.
Make sure to puncture as opposed to trimming edges. If you can, go after the rim protector – a guard can screen him to allow a teammate to flash to the middle.
THINK THE GAME
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PGC Basketball provides intense, no-nonsense basketball training for players and coaches. Our basketball camps are designed to teach players of all positions to play smart basketball, be coaches on the court, and be leaders in practices, games and in everyday life.
We combine our unique PGC culture with a variety of teaching methods and learning environments to maximize the learning potential of those that attend our sessions. In addition to spending 6-7 hours on the court each day, lessons will be reinforced through classroom sessions and video analysis.
Our goal at PGC is to empower you with the tools to fulfill your basketball dreams, while also assisting you in experiencing the joy of the journey.