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Tribe Spotlight: Diamond Valley Eagles

We’re trying something new. This is the first Tribe Spotlight where we feature the successes, struggles, insights, and hopefully game footage of Read & React coaches. Our first spotlight comes from Stephen Ring in Melbourne, Australia. I know, the R&R is so international. Here’s what Coach Ring (Ringy in the forum) has to say. And, if you want your team spotlighted, send me an email at and we’ll set it up.

The following clips have been taken from our first pre-season games through the fifth game of the regular season. We are far from perfect, but what I’ve tried to highlight with these clips is the players making the reads and reactions. We don’t score on every occasion and sometimes we don’t make the correct reactions, but I think the footage shows that the coordinated movement (even with mistakes) is very difficult to defend, post passing can open up the outside for kick-outs, and cutters are generally in good rebounding position if a shot is taken. Pay particular attention to the progression from the pre-season (Videos 1 & 2) into the regular season (Videos 3 & 4)- we made a lot of progress!

Pre-Season Clips: Learning the Basics

The above clips are from a couple of our pre-season games and we are pretty much sticking to our basic Layers highlighting:

  • Pass & Cut with Circle Movement
  • Good Front Cuts and Post Feeds
  • Post Passing with Laker Cuts
  • Baseline Drives filling windows
  • Drive and Pitch

Pre-Season Clips: Becoming More Comfortable

Here’s another set of pre-season games highlighting:

  • Corner Back Cuts
  • Speed Dribble and an attempted Power Dribble
  • Penetrate and Pitch
  • Penetrate and Dish
  • Back Screen, hit the cutter, dish to Post (pity it was a traveling call)
  • Strong Basket Cuts
  • Baseline Drives
  • Post Passing and Laker Cuts
  • Filling windows

Early Regular Season Clips: Starting to Click

Now we’re just beginning the regular season. The above clips highlight:

  • Over the Read Line Back Cuts
  • Hook & Look kickout to Post
  • Guard post up after cut
  • Advanced Post Reaction on Baseline Drive
  • Guard post up for dish
  • Post Blocking, hit the Post, dish to Laker Cut
  • Pass & Cut with Dribble Penetration

Early Regular Season Clips: We’re On Our Way

A few games into the regular season highlighting:

  • Fill high overplay Back Cuts
  • Hook and Look dish to Post
  • Baseline Back Cut
  • Power Dribble Post Pass
  • Drive and Pitch
  • Post Passing Laker Cuts

I have been a volunteer coach for 25 years and currently coach a U18 club representative team called the Diamond Valley Eagles. My boys are 16 and 17 playing in the strongest level of competition in the state. I definitely have some high level players with a good understanding of the game and this is our second year with the Read & React.

We practice twice weekly for 1 1/2 hours per session and play one game per week under FIBA rules including the 24 second shot clock. As of our last game, we are tied for first place with an overall record of 11-2.

Layers 1-5, as well as Layer 12 are the basis for our structure – that is where we spend the most practice time. We have covered all 17 Layers, but some are certainly not permanent habits yet. Of course, when the team we are slated to play tends towards zone defense, we put more effort into practicing the Pin & Skip, Hook & Look, etc.

The one Layer that I feel I have not been able to adequately teach is the Back Screen Layer. I have really found this difficult to teach in a manner that is not confusing to the players. Whilst I certainly agree that this Layer has many benefits, we as a group struggle with coordination when trying to use it for an extended period. Individual players through their own initiative will go and back screen for another player, but it is not in our regular structure.

Steve, thanks for being our first Tribe Spotlight and working with me to get your story and game footage out to the rest of the Tribe. Also, thanks for being active in the forum. It really helps everyone when we get to see exactly how other R&R coaches are progressing. We’ll be expecting an update when the season ends.


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about rick torbett

Rick Torbett has taught thousands of coaches to win more games through his innovative approach to the game. He has created powerful training for coaches at any level so they can coach their best and win more games.

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Read & React 5-Player Coordination Drills

Enter your email address to get an inside look at teaching the Read & React Offense with the drills in this free video.