“Love” these 3 options off a line

From Roger DeBoer, head coach at Lynden Christian High in Lynden, Washington

When you have a big man with the ability to shoot from the perimeter, the floor stretches, your options increase and the chances the defense stops you decrease.

Why use it

When forming a line of players at the free-throw line, defenders are forced to pick a side – high or low. If players stay low to protect the hoop, then the perimeter is open. If they cheat to the high side, you have space near the hoop to exploit. This play offers options/counter for both. It’s called “Love” after Kevin Love – a big man with a shooting touch.

Set up

The point guard takes the ball out on the side while the other four players form a line at the free-throw line. Your post who shoots well (5) is located as second in line. Place your other guards behind him or her with the final player (4) just in front of 5.

"Love" these 3 options off a line

How to play

4 and 2 pinch low to seal off 5’s defender. 3 curls high around the line and relocates to the ball-side corner to move some focus in that direction. 5 pops to the top and catches a pass from 1. 5 takes the shot in this first option [1]. If the defense cheats high, have 2 slip the screen and catch a lob pass at the rim from 1 [2]. A third option is to have 2 slip the screen but pop to the opposite wing if you still are in need of a 3-pointer [3].

Technique

The key is for 4 and 2 to “close the door” on any defenders trying to sneak through to guard 5 at the top. As the defense adjusts, then the counters come into play.