For a player to contribute to the team on the offensive side of the court, they must be familiar with basic offensive movements.
There are primarily three things a ball handler can do in the half-court offense after passing the basketball.
- Cut toward the basket, looking for a pass (give-and-go).
- Screen away for a teammate.
- Provide an on-the-ball screen (pick-and-roll).
There are three things a player without the ball can do.
- Get open in order to receive a pass from the person with the ball. This is typically done by making a 'V cut', where after moving away from the ball, drawing contact from the defender, quickly cuts and continues to come towards the ball until they have received the ball.
- Fake towards the ball with a fist out (rather than an open hand out) and make a back-door cut towards the basket in order to get a pass while going towards the basket.
- Set a pick for the person with the ball (assuming they still have their dribble). This is a first step in a pick-and-roll.
- Set a pick for a teammate to free them up for a pass. In this case, the teammate should see this coming and should 'set up their defensive person' by faking to move in a direction different from where they will make their cut off of the pick that is about to be set.
A player should never stand after throwing a pass. Encourage offensive movement.
The offensive movement drill should be practiced first without defenders. Once players have mastered the basics (fakes, cuts, and screens), introduce defensive players. Initially, the “defenders” should be coaches/parents in order to create a more controlled drill.
For all offensive movement drills, consider setting up cones or using parents to represent starting, cutting, and screening spots. Consider using chairs for defenders. Be sure to run drills on both sides of the court, where applicable.
Back Door Cut Drill
This drill is designed to teach players how to get open when they are overplayed by defenders. This drill also helps players pass to a moving target.
- Form two lines: Line 1 near the top of the key (passing line) and Line 2 at the block area under the goal (shooting line).
- Line 1 has the basketball, as this player will make a two-hand bounce pass to their moving teammate at the appropriate time.
- On command, the player in Line 2 (“cutter”) will make a strong diagonal cut toward the wing area.
- The cutter will plant his or her outside foot, while showing a hand target (with hand displayed as a closed fist) for a decoy.
- The passer should fake a pass to teammate at wing area.
- The cutter then makes a hard diagonal cut back toward the basket and receives a pass for a lay-up or short jump shot.
- The cutter rebounds their own shot and the players switch lines.
Allow the passer two to three dribbles and require a jump stop before passing. Incorporate all three basic passes (chest, bounce, and overhead). If there are 10 players on your team, divide your team into two groups and perform the drill on both sides of the basket.
Basket Cut (Give-and-Go) Drill
One of the most dangerous offensive players on the court is the player who just passed the ball. This drill teaches players to make a cut to the basket after making a pass.
- Form two lines: Line 1 near the top of the key (shooting line) and Line 2 at the wing area (passing line).
- Line 1 has the basketball, as this player will make a two-hand chest pass to their teammate at the appropriate time.
- On command, the player in Line 2 will make a short diagonal cut toward the goal and back up close to his or her original wing spot to receive a pass.
- Once the pass is made to the wing area, the player in Line 1 will take one to two steps toward the weak-side of the court (to set up the defender) before making a hard cut toward the ball-side of the basket; cutter must show a hand target to the passer.
- The passer on the wing area will throw a two-hand chest pass to the cutter for a lay-up.
- The cutter rebounds their own shot, dribbles around and behind Line 2, stops dribbling with a jump stop, and passes to the next player in Line 1.
- Players will switch lines after each turn.
Pick and Roll Drill
This drill is designed to teach players how to set an on-the-ball screen and immediately roll to the basket for scoring opportunities. The player setting the screen should come to a jump stop and set a proper screen. Feet should be shoulder-width apart (leading to a wide screen) with arms down and hands joined in the middle of the body.
- Form two lines: Line 1 near the top of the key and Line 2 at the block area under the goal.
- Line 1 has the basketball, as this player will make a two-hand chest pass to their moving teammate at the appropriate time.
- On command, the player in Line 2 will make a strong diagonal cut toward the wing area.
- Player from Line 2 will receive the pass and square up to the basket in triple threat position.
- Player from Line 1 will immediately follow the pass and screen the player’s defender.
- Player from Line 2 will dribble around the screen toward the middle of the court with head up.
- Screener will ROLL toward the basket using a reverse pivot and receive a pass for a lay-up.
- The shooter rebounds his or her own shot and the players switch lines.
Screen and Go Away Drill
This drill is designed to free a teammate so they can get open to receive a pass. Allow 30 seconds before rotating groups of three.
- Players form three lines about 20 feet away from the basket, with Line 1 at the top of the key area and Lines 2 and 3 at each of the wing areas.
- Lines should be 12-15 feet apart.
- As the player in Line 1 holds the basketball, players from Lines 2 and 3 will take two to three hard steps away from the basketball and back up to their starting spots showing hand targets.
- Player in Line 1 will pass to one of the players at the wing area.
- Player receiving the pass should square up to the basket.
- After making the pass to the wing area, the player from Line 1 will screen away for the opposite wing player.
- On the screen, offensive players should make shoulder-to-shoulder contact to “screen” off a defender.
- The player who was screened for cuts toward the top of the key and “fills” the open spot on the floor (Line 1).
- Repeat the drill over and over until time is called.
1. The player who was screened for could curl toward the basket for a pass and lay-up
2. After setting the screen at the wing area, the screener could make a back-cut to the basket for a pass and lay-up