The Mikan Drill

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Syracuse inbounds play: Shades of the Miami Heat

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I caught a good amount of the Miami – Oklahoma City game on Sunday and came away impressed with the following inbounds play drawn up by Coach Spoelstra right before the half.  (Note: In searching for video, I found a similar website to this one for the NBA. Check out NBA Playbook for all your NBA X’s and O’s needs.)

Watching the Syracuse game, I wondered if Coach Boeheim was watching the Heat game as well, as he drew up a very similar play in nearly the same situation, which got the Orange a bucket as well at the halftime buzzer.

The play begins with Rick Jackson on the near block and Dion Waiters on the far block. The play is designed for Jackson to turn and set a screen for Waiters flashing to the corner. One other key to this play is that Jeremy Lamb cannot sag down on Jackson as he needs to respect the outside shot of Kris Joseph.

Jackson sets the screen for Waiters, as referenced. Charles Okwandu does a good job of not letting Jackson get a piece of Kemba Walker and Waiters is covered as he flashes to the corner.

Instead of switching, UConn chose to play straight man to man defense. Since this was their gameplan, the defense by Okwandu was great. He lets Walker get through the screen and cut off the corner pass. However, the play was designed to set up Jackson to take advantage of the defense if they played straight up or switched the screen.

This play is slightly different from the Heat version, as the Thunder switched the play. Since they switched, James was able to seal off the switching defender and get open.

Since Okwandu is playing to the side of Jackson to let Walker through, Jackson pivots and seals Okwandu behind him. If UConn would have switched, Jackson could have sealed Walker as well.

As stated earlier, Lamb cannot sag down on Jackson because he must respect Joseph, so this allows Triche to deliver the pass and Jackson to go one on one with Okwandu. With two seconds on the clock, Jackson makes a quick move before the help can collapse and converts the short shot to give Syracuse the lead.

Maybe it is just a coincidence that we saw the same play in similar situation but maybe Boeheim was watching the Heat game and put Spoelstra’s play in his own playbook.

Written by Joshua Riddell

February 4, 2011 at 2:04 am

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