All coaches probably have different names for it—maybe ping-ping-ping or tungo-tungo-tungo or maybe just “Move it quick!” But whatever the name, coaches and winning teams realize the value of having the basketball click from one player to another.
A click is when the ball comes into your hands and goes out again in an eighth of a second. Not a second later, after you look around. Not a moment later, after you first check to see if you can get a shot. But immediately. You catch the ball, you throw the ball–like a second baseman on a double play.
The only way you can make a click pass is to know before you get the ball what you are going to do with it. That takes good court awareness. Larry Bird, one of the greatest basketball players in the history of the game, was a master of click passes. Considering what a great shooter he was, it would seem as if he would have had an excuse for holding the ball and looking around all the time. But every game, he had dozens of click passes, passes that just barely touched his hands before he was sending the ball on its way to a teammate.
Naturally, if you have good enough court awareness to pass the ball immediately to a teammate wide open, that’s great. But even if you don’t, if you concentrate on throwing 10 to 12 click passes per game, even if the passes don’t go to the “right” man each time, you still will be helping your team. Click passes not only help team morale and look impressive, but even when they are thrown to the “wrong” guy, they still put enormous pressure on the defense because the ball is moving so quickly from one position to another.
The extra pass always gets the job done
You cannot be a good basketball player simply by passing the ball immediately after you get it; but you would hardly ever hurt a good team by doing that, and you would help them often.
The point is that most players hold the ball too long most of the time. It is difficult to make this any more emphatic. You may miss an open man someday, and the fans or coach may groan for a moment, but you don’t lose many games by clicking the ball. You lose them by holding it too much.
This is not to say that you should treat the ball like a “hot potato” and just flip it out of your hands without even knowing where a teammate is. But often you should get rid of the ball quickly, when you can.
Plan to get 10 clicks a game. If you can talk your teammates into doing the same, your team will be much better. Click passes will put the ball in scoring position or dangerous position “like magic” against man or zone defenses. You will probably be surprised at how much easier it is for your team to score by this simple effort. Click, click, click. Get 10!
—Excerpted from the book, “Stuff! Good Players Should Know.”
THINK THE GAME
Join us this summer and discover how to become a playmaker, lead your team, and run the show.
Learn to play offense the same way you breathe. Join PGC Director of Player Development Tyler Coston as he teaches the alternating current philosophy on offense, which will allow your team to get better shots and keep the defense scrambling.
Mediocre passers attempt to pass around and over defenders. Great passers pass through defenders. To pass through defenders, you must subconsciously know which windows are open. To do this, you must learn to be patient. Keep your elbow bent and the ball next your body. Open passing windows with your eyes and your height.
When asked about what he learned in the NBA, Devin Booker said the number one thing he learned was he does not have to play fast. The NBA game is all about holding something back and knowing when to use those one or two steps. That’s control.
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.