Tradition tells us to attack an odd fronted zone with an even fronted offense. In that case, to attack a 1-3-1 zone defense, you should use a two-guard offense to split that top defender.
But, what if you attacked odd with odd? What if you attacked that 1-3-1 with a 5 OUT formation?
In the first part of the video below, Uie Garcia has his team use the Read & React Zone Attack against a 1-3-1. The first series begins with a 5 OUT formation, then he switches to a more standard 4 OUT attack. Each seems to work equally well.
The point is this: don’t let the formation of the defense necessarily force you into an offensive formation that you don’t like. It is possible to attack a 1-3-1 effectively in 5 OUT.
This video is an excerpt from Read & React Clinics: Planning the R&R Practice. It’s a 5 DVD set designed to walk you through the finer points of designing and implementing an efficient Read & React practice.
Rick Torbett takes it a step further, adding the Pin & Skip. You must make help-side defense pay for cheating closer and closer to the ball. The easiest way to do this is to Pin a deep defender and Skip the pass over her head.
Do this a couple of times in a possession and even the most disciplined defensive teams will lose their spacing and wind up vulnerable. And, if nothing else, it will keep the help-side honest, opening up space in the lane.
Now, the best teams can generate Pins & Skips organically, but if your team needs a temporary crutch, try this one: any Dribble At against a zone creates a Pin & Skip for the player who was Dribbled At. So, if the guard Dribbles At the wing, the wing cuts (that’s basic layer 3 action) and receives the Skip pass on the other side of the court.