EXPERT SESSIONS AND ADVICE

Use 2 Passes To Go Length Of Court

Avoid launching a long, low-probability pass with little time on the clock and rather get the ball into the hands of a guard, which makes for a shorter pass to the front court.

Why use it

It’s a daunting task to go the length of the court in just a few seconds. But, that doesn’t mean you run a couple screens 80 feet from the ball and throw a Hail Mary pass. Use the lack of attention on the backcourt to your advantage to trim down the space to cover and increase your chances to score.

Set up

4 is inbounding. The play works better if 4 can run the baseline but you still can get the ball into play if not. 1 and 2 are in the backcourt with 3 standing just in front of the opposite basket and 5 is at the top of the key on the far end of the floor facing that basket.

How to play

2 steps toward 1 to set a screen. 1 comes in front of 2’s screen and moves to the opposite side of the floor as 4 runs with 1 (if allowed). 4 passes to 1 [diagram 1].

1 takes a dribble if there is time but regardless, 1 must pass the ball up the court to a spot where 3 needs to get. When 3 sees the ball moving up the left side of the floor, 3 runs off 5’s right shoulder and curls to the passing spot [diagram 2].

If 4 reads the defense flowing with the point guard, 4 stops running the baseline and passes to 2. 3 reads this and comes off 5’s left shoulder and to a spot on the right side of the floor for the pass [diagram 3].

Technique

If you have three seconds or more, the guard has time for a dribble but if fewer than three seconds, it’s not enough time to put the ball on the floor.

    1. Be sure 4 is certain if he or she can run the baseline or not — the play still is effective even if 4 cannot run the baseline
    2. 3 reads the action in the backcourt, so in this instance 3 runs at 5 (who is facing the basket at this end) and runs toward 5’s right shoulder

    3. 1 catches the ball and immediately passes to a spot on the wing in the front court expecting 3 to be there
    4. 3 curls around 5’s screen and hustles to where the ball is intended to go, and from there 3 either shoots immediately or takes a dribble (if there is time) to set up a better look

    5. When the defense overplays the point guard, 2 shifts toward the sideline and catches the inbound pass from 4
    6. 3 has to read this and attack from the opposite side of 5 to curl toward the ball

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