EXPERT SESSIONS AND ADVICE

Handoff Sets Up Backdoor Score

The point guard starts with the ball, executes a handoff and looks to be out of the play until coming free off a backscreen running toward the hoop.

Why use it

The point guard sometimes is the forgotten player after the ball is entered. Use this to your advantage by having the ball move to the right side as the point runs backdoor. Cleveland uses these actions quite a bit to get an open shot for Kyrie Irving.

Set up

2 starts in the right corner. 3 is on the left wing extended from the hash area. 4 and 5 are positioned on opposite elbows.

How to play

3 steps toward 1 as 1 dribbles left. 1 hands off the ball to 3. 3 now is using the momentum to start moving with the ball to the right side [diagram 1].

3 dribbles right. 5 takes one step high and screens for 1. 1 runs hard toward the hoop. 3 passes to 4 [diagram 2].

4 catches and quickly passes to 1 cutting to the hoop. 3 is relocating to the right wing for a potential pass back from 4 if 1 isn’t open. 1 scores as 5 moves back in transition defense [diagram 3].

Technique

Be sure 2 stays in the corner but is engaged enough in the play to keep his or her defender in that area away from the action. After making the hand off, 1 hesitates to give the impression he or she isn’t involved in the upcoming actions before sprinting off the backscreen from 5. 4 has the option to throw either a quick chest or bounce pass to hit 1 in stride so 1 doesn’t need a dribble to get to the basket.

    1. 1 dribbles at 3, hands off and waits so it appears 1 isn’t in the play anymore, which sets up the unsuspecting defender for the backdoor cut
    2. These actions are fluid, so 3 catches the handoff with momentum moving to the right so one defender can’t stop two players

    3. Once 1 commits to running backdoor, 1 goes hard off 5’s screen to gain a step on the defender and come free toward the hoop
    4. 3 dribbles right to create the best passing angle possible to enter the ball to 4 at the right elbow

    5. The pass must be made to lead 1 toward the hoop — you don’t want 1 dribbling before trying to score to keep the advantage

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