Winning Hoops

July/August 2013

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July/August 2013 Coaching Advice to Help You Build a Winning Program Vol. 27, No. 6 A Unique Technique of Defensive Closeouts By John Kimble, formerly of Crestview High School, Crestview, Fla. DEFENSE IN BASKETBALL has always been "give and take." A defensive team may decide to take away one particular opponent's offensive strength, but then have to stop the offense's counter to the defense's adjustment. Help-side defense with the proper stances, positioning and techniques can help neutralize several different offensive strengths and attacks. For example, if an offensive team has a strong inside game with good offensive post players, a defensive team can either three-quarter front or fully front that strong offensive post player, while also placing maximum pressure on the perimeter passer. Most likely, the offensive team will counter that defensive strategy by lobbing over the fronting defense or will attack the basket by driving on the perimeter defender that is putting maximum pressure on the ball. To then prevent that type of offensive action, the defensive team almost undoubtedly will include help-side defense in the fronting defensive scheme. Some defensive teams that want to put maximum pressure on the ball to prevent 3-point shots or to help neutralize interior passing from the perimeter may fear that their on-theball defenders cannot contain some of the opposing perimeter players. That is where the same type of proper helpside defense can help stop that form of offensive attack. DIAGRAM 1 helps illustrate either the help-side defensive scheme or a similar defensive scheme that could include these coaching points of emphasis: All off-the-ball defenders that are two or more perimeter passes away from the ball must be in "ballyou-man flat triangle locations" that are one to one-and-one-half steps off of the imaginary passing line. All off-the-ball defenders should be in "pistol stances" with index fingers extended from closed fists (to form pistols shapes) that are pointing at the person they're guarding and the other "pistol" pointing at the ball. The feet should be shoulder width apart with the ball-side foot and leg slightly more forward than the other foot and leg. The head should be on a swivel so that the help-side defender is able to see both the ball and the player. All off-the-ball defenders that are two or more perimeter passes 1 2 3 1 4 5 Continued on page 4 Check out our website at winninghoops.com PLAY OF THE DAY! Check out page 13 to learn the disadvantages of switching on screens and alternatives you can use with your defense! —KEVIN HOFFMAN, Managing Editor

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