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Drills and Practice

Sometimes, your team needs a little help getting the action of the Read & React Offense started. Sometimes, you see a weakness in the defense that your players just won't exploit. And, sometimes, you need to drag a player out of her shell and show her what she's capable of. You're the coach. Those things are your job. Here's how you can integrate them into your daily Read & React training. Just because the Read & React is organic and jazz-like doesn't mean you can't use some specific sequences to get what you need. And, it certainly doesn't mean you can't train with specific sequences to open the eyes of your players to new opportunities. In the video below, Rick Torbett demands two specific actions: the first and the last. All actions in between are still player driven. That allows for a few benefits:
  • it gives your team reps with options that can easily get the offense going (in this case it's the Reverse Dribble).
  • it teaches your team how to use one layer to set up another.
  • it shows what actions you (the coach) consider to be viable scoring opportunities.
  • it forces players to look for coach determined options, not just their default options.
  • and, in practice, it prevents less confident players from hiding in their comfort zones.
This video is from our Read & React Clinics: Planning the R&R Practice DVD set. If you've ever had questions about practice planning with the Read & React, this 5 DVD set is your answer. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FQYrNhcwROc One of my favorite ways to train the Read & React is by using certain actions as trigger actions.

Here is the final installment of Rich Czeslawski's Bounce Off Drill Series. Check out Part 1 and Part 2 - together these three create a progression. You know how much we at Better Basketball love progressions! Rich doesn't just write for the Tribe either, he has his own blog, which is worth spending some time on. After running the 3-Player Drills, we move to our 5-on-0 Bounce Drill, which really reinforces the habit of Circle Movement and allows the player with the ball to work on the Bounce Off technique. We teach our “Bouncers” to reverse dribble (like a defensive slide) with their front shoulder pointed to the rim to protect the ball. Once they get to the new perimeter spot they square their shoulders so they are a threat to pass, shoot, or drive again.

5 on 0 Bounce Off Drill



Player 1 bounces from right corner to left corner, and then finishes with a Baseline Drive.
 Each player is the “Bouncer” once, and then we do the drill starting from the left corner, moving to the right. Bounce Off 5 Man Drill Frame 1Bounce Off 5 Man Drill Frame 2 Bounce Off 5 Man Drill Frame 3Bounce Off 5 Man Drill Frame 4 We finish each set with a Baseline Drive for good measure and Circle Move to the Shooting Windows.
Bounce Off 5 Man Drill Frame 5Bounce Off 5 Man Drill Frame 6 Everyone circle moves left on the baseline drive with the exception of the 2 who must stay home to be the Natural Pitch. This way, all of the Shooting Windows are covered: Safety Valve, 90 degree, 45 degree, and Natural pitch.

This is the second installment of a drill series by Rich Czeslawski designed to accelerate Circle Movement training by using the Bounce Off Dribble. You can find the first part of the series here.

Wing Bounce - Safety Valve Back Cut


The next 3-player drill we use in the series (which was very aptly foreshadowed in the Forum Comments by Rick after Part 1) is to run the Wing Bounce drill the other direction so that the player bouncing off is pulling a teammate into the Safety Valve spot.  We have the defender step over the Read Line for the Safety Valve Back Cut.  Do this on both sides of the floor as well as with the ball starting at the top of the key.

The Tribe is all about collaboration - that's why we have this site, to share ideas. As active coaches, you are constantly in the lab with the Read & React and because of that, you have the unique ability to come up with great options, drills, and thoughts. Today, we start a three part Bounce Drill Series from Rich Czeslawski that he used to solidify Circle Movement habits - something a lot of Tribers struggle with (you can see another of his posts here). And, if you're uncertain as to what the Bounce Off is, it is explained in more detail here and here.

Bounce Drill Series: 3 Man Drills

Since our basketball epiphany and subsequent installation of Read and React two years ago, we have been able to very quickly and easily create the habits necessary to run the Read and React as a free flowing offense. The elusive “Great White Buffalo” for us has been Layer 4 – Circle Movement. For whatever reason, our players’ natural response to a teammate driving to the basket is to turn to stone, anchor their feet and hope the ball will be kicked out to them so they can take what is likely to be a contested jumper. They fully understand the benefit Circle Movement provides in increasing the amount of time they have to shoot as their defender must find them and recover to a new spot after helping, but the habit hasn’t quite taken root as quickly as others. After watching the movie Inception, and toying with the idea of using dream extraction to plant the habit in their subconscious minds, we decided we just didn’t have it in the budget to go that route and went searching for other answers. Our far less expensive solution was born out of a topic introduced by Rick Torbett at a Read and React clinic we hosted in May. Rick showed our players the merits of “bouncing off” when you drive and can’t get all the way to the rim. The idea is to keep your dribble and “bounce off” to the perimeter spot left open by the teammate circle moving on your initial drive. This concept has evolved into a series of drills we work on every day and has improved our Circle Movement more in two weeks than anything else we have tried in the previous two years! We start with two 3 Player Drills and although they are both shown on the right side of the court, we always drill on both sides in practice.