I feel very privileged to have seen what I did last week, I spent 9 hours recording games with my camera over the weekend….my club hosts a tournament to raise money for a charity and invites 5 of the best clubs to play. So we had Barca, Unicaja, Fuenlabrada, Madrid Selection 99 Born, Real Madrid and of course our club…all 98 born playing….well except for the Madrid selection team. All the teams were of a high level with different playing styles…very talented. Oh and a special mention for a 14 year old Brazilian kid who played for Real and was a huge 6 Feet 9 Inches!!!
This week I will be talking about a coach who works with 14 year old boys. This is a coach who I watch as much as I can…a very experienced coach with many ideas behind each exercise he is teaching. Each session is like a basketball clinic…amazing to watch. I never see the same exercise twice…same ideas, taught in a different way each time…
One of the more interesting ideas I have gained from him is he likes to have 3 cycles in each of his exercises, for example, offence- defence-offence or vice versa or defend a cut then a dribble then a shot….the idea behind this is basketball happens in sequences…all added together. If all exercises end on a score with players walking off to join a queue, they get into the habit of switching off after a score, why not end after the inbound pass is received, or when they get over the halfway line.
I also like his defensive ideas, very aggressive….he tells his players to hit the ball twice on every catch, to let the offence know you are up for the challenge. Go for steals, take those risks and accept those fouls they make when going for the ball. One of the most famous highlights in NBA history includes a defensive risk…Michael Jordan…sneaking back to steal from an un aware Karl Malone…
ahhh beautiful….I still watch it over and over….(as well as T-Macs 13 in 35)
Why not teach these risks…They will learn which steals they are capable of going for and which ones they are not to as they get older. Get up close, with body contact, to see how much the referee will call…if you do it early, you could set a tone for the game, or find out that they are calling everything…
He teaches his players to use their chest to defend…to sprint and cut off defenders…hands up and out and lots of contact with the chest. Lots of contact is the best case scenario, testing the refs…but this can be taken off as the game progresses.
Offensively, this is not going to be a long write up as like coaches I have mentioned before, very simple concepts, no set offences. He uses a 4 out 1 in, he would like his team to try and get the ball to see both corners, and once the ball gets to the 2nd corner this player must attack as soon as he catches the ball, no waiting. He must shoot, go 1v1 or drive and kick to punish the help. How the players get this job done is up to them…they can pass or drive and kick from corner to corner…or use the inside player as a link to both corners…
No skip passes…don’t miss anyone out.
If the post catches on the block he must square up to his defender….he can pivot back…but squaring up makes him a triple threat straight away.
These ideas put a huge responsibility on the players to think for themselves…as the training sessions are full of technical skills, so when it comes to games they have a chance to work out the best way to get each little job done. The players develop their own style, develop decision making skills and discover their own ways to get an advantage over the opponent.
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