Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Fastbreak (III): Run After They Score

Having the "running mentality" is much harder than saying "my team will run the fastbreak". 

Before the season starts, when you're interviewed and asked: "hey coach, how are you going to play?" you like to talk about aggressive defense, fastbreak... Well, that's a start, but then you need to work on it, and you need your players to buy it.

I encouraged my players to try to score during the first 4-6 seconds of the shot clock, even after the other team scored.

We talked about the spacing in the last two posts, here and here, being in the right position to receive the first pass, the use of the fastbreak lanes... but there is one more thing if we really want to run after basket, the catch and pass mentality to give that first pass. It helps if you have players willing to do it, the right attitude here is important. And then, as usual, you need to work on it through drills, repetitions, feedback, rewards...

It's up to you to have the same inbounder every single time when the other team scores or to allow anyone to get the ball and inbound. 

Depending on the skills of your players, you can play with that rule. Sometimes it will be better to know who is responsible to do it, and sometimes it will be faster to have the one who is closer to the basket doing it. Again, it is important to know your players, work with them... and adapt to them.

I have in my mind the right way to catch the ball and pass, but in this case, I'm quite flexible as, frankly, I think it's way more important to do it real quick, to be able to deliver the pass, than to use the exact technique. 

It's a changing situation (different passing angles, the receiver can be in different positions, there might be defenders in front of the passer...) so if the player feels more comfortable doing in a different way, I am fine with it. Once they have the right mentality for the catch and pass, we will work on it to make it still more effective, but I won't "cut their wings" because of which foot goes first or whatever detail I can think of.

Once the first pass is given... push the ball. Sometimes it will be a coast to coast play, sometimes there will be a second pass to give... Push it.

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