The Mikan Drill

To love the game is the greatest of all…

High low action by VCU against a zone defense

with one comment

In this play, we see Jamie Skeen working hard to post up on the right block. Frank Hassell is playing solid three quarter defense and not letting an entry pass be made to Skeen. VCU then runs some natural high low motion and it results in Skeen getting the ball in a position to score, when it looked unlikely he was going to at first.

You can see the defense of Hassell below. The one critique I have is that he be on the opposite side of Skeen, since his help is going to come from the middle and he needs to be able to stop any baseline drive. By playing on the high side of Skeen, he is leaving the baseline open for the dribble drive or Skeen to make a post move to the baseline if the entry pass is made.

You can see Bradford Burgess starting the flash to the high post in the above frame. ODU is in a zone defense, so this is a natural motion by Burgess, as you would see in any effective zone offense. What this does is make Hassell step to Burgess on the catch, taking his focus off of Skeen. This starts the high low action, as the ball first goes to the high post, then to Skeen.

With Burgess being in a scoring position, Hassell steps up to take away a driving lane. What this does is take him a couple steps away from Skeen, leaving him open. Burgess sees this right away and immediately dumps the ball into Skeen, who is suddenly open.

Although Skeen was not open originally, a quick change in the passing angle changes that. We sometimes see the entry passer take a quick dribble or two to improve the angle but it is done here through the pass. What was originally a covered angle turns into an open one with one simple pass.

The flash to the high post is a natural action against a zone defense and Burgess quickly turns it into a positive play for VCU. By forcing Hassell to step up and defend him, he opens up Skeen on the baseline, who is able to finish a tough layup. Burgess needs to make a quick decision here to dump the ball off or attack the basket before the defense adjusts to him catching the ball. He makes the right decision quickly and Skeen turns it into a three point opportunity.

Written by Joshua Riddell

March 8, 2011 at 4:16 am

One Response

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  1. […] jriddell Leave a comment Go to comments In looking at the high low action of VCU last night (here), I complimented Frank Hassell on his post defense but also warned about him being unable to cut […]


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