The Mikan Drill

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USF beats the press of Louisville

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USF struggled a bit with the Cardinal pressure, as they ended up with a 21.9% turnover rate but they also provided a very nice clip of how to beat the pressure. Let’s take a look at the key points.

Get the ball to the middle

The middle is where you want to be in the press (especially a trapping one) for a simple reason: more room to maneuver. Getting caught on the sideline gives the defense extra help, as the offense has a smaller place to try to navigate out of the trap. By keeping the ball in the middle of the court, it opens up options and leaves the offense less susceptible to a trap.

Watch the USF immediately dribble the ball to the middle. This allows him to survey the court and take what the defense gives him. He then passes the ball to his teammate who is flashing to halfcourt, again in the middle of the court.

Nice start by USF to break the press. They did not let Louisville trap them easier by dribbling or passing to the sideline, where they have no where to go. That was the easy part, the key point comes up next.

Pivot and pass to the opposite side

When a trap comes, it often comes to the back of the offensive player. As seen in the following shot, the defender circled in red has come in from the back side. He has gotten there late, however, after the USF player has made the catch.

This means that the area vacated by that defender is now open. The player with the ball must pivot to the opposite side of the court and find the open man. He does this and finds the shooter on the wing for an open look.

They key that made this play was the pivot by the USF player at halfcourt and finding the open man. Instead of being content with playing the way he was facing, he had the confidence and wherewithal to pivot the backside of the court. Nice job that led to an open three.

Written by Joshua Riddell

January 11, 2011 at 3:02 am

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