Monthly Archives: March 2016

6 Steps to Dominating the Court

Many basketball players are looking for ways to really stand out on the court and show how good they are while other need ways to really get to the next level with their ability. I have put together some basketball tips to help you get ahead of your rivals.

1. Be focused. The top athletes have a laser-sharp focus which gives them a strong desire to win. You should aim to develop your focus so you can visualize the outcome of a move before you have started it. Keeping good concentrating means you will be in the zone more often and working to your best abilities.

2. Be a team player. It is not a one-man game so always think about your team-mates. As much as we all enjoy some personal glory, the main goal is to win as a team so always aim to build each other up and help others with your knowledge.

3. Be decisive. Do not sit back and wait for things to happen. In most cases nothing will happen when you do this so always be willing to take action. When you have decided on an action you must commit to it or it will not come off.

4. Study the best. Take note of the top NBA players and what they do. Think about tactics and movement. Watch how the top players control the ball and take shots. This will then translate into your own game.

5. Practice hard. You should really dedicate yourself to working hard even in practice sessions. This will lead to improvements in your game that will show in the big moments. Work at something until you have it down perfectly.

6. Listen to your coach or mentor. Pay attention to what those around you say if they have been there before. If you have a mentor that has worked hard they will have a lot of good advice to impart so pay attention to them.

Master Off the Screen Shots

NBA’s best shooter ever is Reggie Miller; his off the Screen shots were so deadly, that other players could only dream of shooting at that level. His speed and shooting percentage Off the Screen frustrated many teams and players.

Before we continue, answer the following questions:

    (1) How fast you take your shot? (2) Can you get a clear view of the rim before you shoot? (3) Can you make the shot off the screen?

Basketball tips on how to Master Off the Screen Shots?

(1) When you go by the screener, catch his jersey. This way your defender has no alternative but to trail you or to try cutting the passing lane.

(2) Run as fast as you can, don’t worry about setting your legs. If you run slowly it doesn’t matter if you can set your legs. You won’t be open.

(3) Watch your defender. If you have gained a distance because you run faster, take the shot. If he is behind you, curl.

(4) If your defender tries to cut the passing lane, jump to the corner. You’ll be wide open.

(5) Work on your release and foot work. The faster you can release the ball the more dangerous you’ll become.

The most important advice on Off the Screen shots is to practice. Remember that no one was born taking shots off screens. Start practicing by yourself, throw the ball to the wing, set your legs and take the shot.

Master your Pick and Roll

Mastering Screen and Roll gives an important advantage to the offense team as it is considered one of basketballs’ toughest situations to defend.

Lets take John Stockton for example, NBA’s all-time leader in steals (3,265) and assists (15,806). True he had Karl Malone next to him, but his remarkable ability to use the Screen and Roll to a level of perfection made this duo one of the deadliest ever.

Before we continue with basketball tips for Screen and Roll, ask yourself:

(1) Can you create a shooting situation every time you play Screen and Roll?

(2) Are you afraid of the trap or hedge? Are you just looking to get the ball away from you as fast as you can?

(3) Can you find the open man?

Want to Master Screen and Roll?

(1) First of all, don’t rush it; you need time to read the situation.

(2) Always try to start the play where you believe can take the shot. If the defender is going under the screen, take the advantage and make him pay.

(3) The opponent teams’ defense will try many solutions: switch, hedge, trap… at some point, someone is going to be open or with a mismatch you want to take advantage of.

(4) In a trap situation, it is most likely that one of your teammates will have a better passing angle to the big guy.

(5) Remember – If you started to drive and can’t finish, the corner man is waiting for the shot. He is w-i-d-e open.

(6) At least 25% of the time you need to fake and go to the same side you came from. No one will expect that.

How To Improve Your Conditioning While Improving Your Skills

Conditioning is such a critical factor of success in all sports and basketball is no exception. In fact, due to the constant running nature of a game of basketball, conditioning could have more impact in basketball than in many other sports.

Given the limited amount of practice time we have, we have to find a way to get in top condition while getting enough work on our skills to improve and be ready to play against top competition. The traditional ways of conditioning, running sprints, distance, etc., are very effective as conditioners but have no relevance to the game. Running suicides or 17’s (running sideline to sideline 17 times in a minute) might be a little more game like (very little) but still does nothing to improve your skills. Below are some basketball tips where you can accomplish both better conditioning and better skills.

Full Court Dribble

Start at the baseline with a ball. Using your right hand, dribble to the opposite baseline with 5 dribbles. Switch hands on the way back. Next try it with 4 dribbles, then 3 dribbles. If you do them all in a row, you have run 6 sprints. Put a lay-up on the end of each sprint and you have worked on your conditioning, dribbling and layups all at the same time. You have improved your ability to score on the break and in transition.

Defensive Reaction

Start at the baseline. When ready sprint to mid-court. Upon reaching mid-court, get in your defensive stance and defensive slide, diagonally, back to the baseline. Change direction twice. When you reach the baseline, sprint immediately to the foul line. Upon reaching the foul line, get in your defensive stance and defensive slide side to side. Change directions twice. After the second change in direction, sprint to the far end of the court and touch the rim 10 times. Take a minute to rest. Step back up to the baseline to go again. This time, change directions 4 times. On the next set, change direction 6 times and then 8 times in your last set. You have increased your conditioning, improved your defensive footwork and worked on your jumping.

Beat The Pro

Pick your favorite player as your imaginary opponent. In this case we’ll use Kobe Bryant and your opponent. Start with the ball on the baseline. Dribble to the foul line and shoot a jump shot. Then, chase down the rebound. If you have missed, score the rebound by making a lay-up. Then dribble back to the foul line and shoot again. Keep score. You get 1 point for every jump shot you make (rebound layups don’t count) and Kobe Bryant gets 2 points for every shot you miss. Play for 2 minutes. If you win, take some foul shots. If Kobe Bryant wins, do the full court dribble drill (see above) 1 time for every point he beat you by. You have worked on your conditioning, ballhandling, shooting, rebounding and layups.

Spinouts

Pick 10 spots, 5 on each side of the court, that you think you can shoot effectively from. Start with the ball under the basket. Spin out to the first spot (a spin out is a toss with bask-spin on the ball. Done properly, the ball will hit the ground, bounce straight up and “wait for you”). Sprint after the ball, catch, make a right foot pivot and shoot. Chase down the rebound and if it was a missed shot, score with a lay-up. Grab the ball out of the net and immediately spin out to the second spot, then the third, fourth, etc. Continue until you shoot from the 10th spot. After the 10th spot, reverse the order (spot 10 becomes spot 1) and go back the other way, using left foot pivots. Continue using different pivots on each rotation. Your objectives are: make as many 1st shots as you can, make 6 rotations (60 shots) in 10 minutes. After your 6 rotations, relax by making 15 foul shots and then start again. The drill can be done with any pivot, practicing jump shots and 1 dribble moves. You have worked on your conditioning, shooting, rebounding, follow shots and pivots.