Basketball Systems, Skills & Drills

Press breaks

Lute Olson

a) Made basket

The wings sprint and touch the midcourt line but look back. 1 gets up near the top of the key then cuts one way or the other. If 1 cuts ballside and is covered, 4 runs the baseline, 3 comes back hard on eye contact, but not on a straight line, he v-cuts into his defender's path then back out.

4 goes wide opposite the inbounds pass, 1 makes a diagonal cut for a pass.

The passing angle to 1 is not as good if 4 inbounds to the wing on the same side as 1 (here 2).

b) Made free throw

The press is looking to deny or trap the inbounds pass. 5 sets a straight-on screen for 1, who can go either way. As soon as 1 goes weakside, 5 comes right back to the ball. If 5 is not open, 2 comes back for a pass, 5 is gone as soon as the ball is inbounded.

If 1 comes ballside off 5's screen, he can't go across an imaginary line one step outside the lane because he will probably be trapped in the corner, but the worst thing is he takes away 2's lane. Therefore if 1 comes off ballside and doesn't get a pass, 4 runs the baseline. He does have the option of 5, but they would rather pass to the wing to have an attacking press offence with the three best perimeter players involved, and 4 and 5 as trail people (?).

The second the inbounds pass is made, 4 goes wide opposite, 1 goes right through the middle.

c) 3/4 press (one-man front)

You want to get into gap areas. 5 goes long (top of the far key), he doesn't have to screen to get the ball in. 4 inbounds to 1 and circles to the middle of the press, normally they want the next pass to the side, not to 4.

Against pressure, you want lag (reversal), sideline, middle and skip pass options. Once the ball goes to a wing, 5 at the top of the key comes hard to the ballside sideline. 2 is 3's most likely receiver, 4 may need to screen a defender in the middle so he can't cover the skip pass. On a pass to 4, he turns and faces, looks opposite for 1 or 2.

d) 2-2-1

4 inbounds to 1, who turns and faces, takes the ball to the middle, 3 and 2 come back along the sidelines, 4 goes middle.

On a pass to 2 then 4, he turns and looks to pass to 3 backside.

e) Spot inbounds

4 can't run the baseline, so 3 offside is not much value. 1 cuts weakside off 5 who comes to the ball, they can usually get it up in the air to him (a bigger player) if they get stuck. 2 reads 4's eyes, goes at his defender then out towards the sideline, but not in the corner.

1 comes through on the pass to 2, continues to work the middle if he is not open.

To prepare to play a good pressing team, use six press defenders until across halfcourt, then play 5 on 5.

This page was made with Basketball playbook from Jes-Soft

2007-13 Eric Johannsen