The best offensive players are often great defenders. They want the ball and they use great defense to get it. They realize also they are more valuable if they are great defenders. Too often a coach has to choose between a great scorer and a great defender for crunch time. Improve your chances of being on the floor by being both. Let’s start with defense.
- Keep the ball out of your opponent’s hands.
- Overplay passing lanes.
- Box out on offense and defense on every play.
- Always be on the alert for a steal
- Overplay right (to your left) as 75 % of the population is right handed.
- Harass the dribbler into picking up the ball.
- Close on the dribbler as soon as s/he picks up the ball.
- Play with your hands palms towards your man always.
- Your ball side hand should always be in a position to make a play.
- Reach straight up and step in with the ball side hand and foot on shot attempts.
- Jump straight up. Do not jump into the shooter.
- Block the ball with a tap not a swipe.
- Block the ball as the shooter releases the shot.
- Yelling “shot” can be a distraction to the shooter.
- Box out the shooter when s/he lands.
You will commit a foul if:
- You reach across your body and hit/impede the shooter as s/he begins a shot attempt.
- You touch or hit the shooter from the wrist to the elbow on the shot attempt.
- You hold any part of the shooter.
- You jump into the shooter and change his/her direction.
- You do not allow the shooter to land before you box out.
NOTE: 1 steal per quarter for a fast break and finish ups your average 8 points and the steal instantly become a “highlight” if you dunk, finish strong or nicely dime a team mate.