HomeOffensesNotes on the "Read and React Offense"™

Personal Notes on the "Read and React Offense"™

By James Gels, from the Coach’s Clipboard Basketball Playbook, @ http://www.coachesclipboard.net

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The Read and React offense was developed by coach Rick Torbett (BetterBasketball.com). Below is a review of this offense, and some of my thoughts about it after having used it for a few years (varsity boys). This is by no means complete, but hopefully gives you an idea of what it's about. Also click "View Animation". Get the Betterbasketball Read and React DVD set for the complete package.

We like this offense a lot. We were formerly a motion offense team, but switched to the Read and React offense a few years ago. It basically is a motion offense, but with specific rules and "reads" for players without the ball. The player with the ball is free to do what he/she sees best... drive, shoot, or pass and cut. We get more player movement and less standing around with this offense. And we can still call set plays... but if the play fails, we just fall back into the Read and React as our basic offense... Coach Gels

General

  1. Similar to but different from motion offenses. In R&R, player with ball ("initiator") has options to do multiple things. The other four players ("reactors") read and react to what the guy with the ball does, and there is only one correct off-ball movement.

  2. Very flexible... can use with almost any set... 3-2, 4-1, 5-out, 1-4 high, etc. Can be used in an up-tempo, quick attack offense, and in transition, or in a deliberate, slow offense. You can use it as your delay offense without changing anything... just tell players "lay-ups only".

  3. Can be used against both man-to-man and zone defenses... so you don't need a separate zone offense.

  4. You can run plays, but use the R&R rules once the play breaks down or fails.

  5. Is a "system"... taught in 17 layers. Could start in 5th grade with layers 1 and 2, and add a layer every year as the kids progress. You can start it out with your varsity, teach first few layers and gradually add the layers as the weeks progress... makes you a better offensive team by tournament time. Varsity level players can progress through the layers more quickly given their skill level and maturity.

  6. Makes your defense better by having to guard the R&R every day in practice.

  7. Teach this offense by using R&R breakdown drills every practice, and 5-on-5.

Teaching Offense by Layers (17)

Start with layer #1 and progress. Each layer must be learned before the next is added and becomes a "habit" (automatic without having to think). Each layer is taught using breakdown drills.

LEVEL A - Laying the Foundation

Layer #1, Dribble-penetration

Other 4 players use "circle movement" on the perimeter and rotate to fill the spots. The direction of the dribble-drive (right or left) determines the direction of the perimeter rotation. If ball penetrates right, the circle rotates right (counterclockwise). If the ball penetrates left, the circle rotates left (clockwise).

Read and React offense - dribble penetration

The only exception is dribble-penetration along the baseline (see below)... the opposite corner stays, so that the baseline dribbler has the option of passing out to the opposite corner.

Ball options:
1. Dribble from the top... score, pitch out to corner-wing ("natural pitch") or back out to "safety valve" (back to the spot vacated by the dribbler), or dish inside. We always want to fill the spot where the penetrator started from, and this "safety" spot is often wide open.

Read and React offense - dribble penetration Read and React offense - dribble penetration
Read and React offense - dribble penetration Read and React offense - dribble penetration

2. Wing dribble penetration... score, pitch out opposite, or dish inside.

Read and React offense - dribble penetration Read and React offense - dribble penetration

Layer #2, Baseline dribble-drive

We always want the opposite corner filled for a kick-out pass. In our perimeter rotation with baseline dribble-penetration, we want these spots filled: the "safety", a "90-degree pitch", and a "45-degree pitch", in addition to filling the opposite corner.

Offense in 4-out (diagram I):
Opposite wing moves to corner.
Post rotates up to 45 degree spot.
Opposite wing rotates to 90 degree spot.
Ball-side wing rotates to vacated corner (safety).

Diagram J shows the rotation when the post player is ballside. Here the post player I-cuts to the 90-degree spot, and the opposite top player (O1) stays put at the 45-degree spot, while O2 rotates to the safety spot.

Read and React offense - baseline dribble penetration Read and React offense - baseline dribble penetration

Offense in 5-out (diagram H):
Opposite corner stays.
Opposite wing rotates to 45 degree spot.
Point rotates to 90 degree spot.
Ball-side wing rotates to vacated corner (safety).

Offense in 3out-2in (diagram K):
Opposite wing slides down to opposite corner.
Both posts rotate up to 45 degree and 90 degree spots.
Point rotates to vacated wing-corner (safety).

Read and React offense - baseline dribble penetration Read and React offense - baseline dribble penetration

Layer #3, Pass & Cut layer

Rules...
1. Passer... after passing, always basket-cut on a pass 1-spot away. Generally, we want these cuts all the way to the hoop before filling out to the perimeter. On a perimeter pass this would be either a front cut (diagram L), or a rear-cut if defender overplaying (diagram M). This cut eliminates the hedge defender once the ball is passed to the next spot. If the pass is made into the post (also just one spot away), then there will be either a Laker low cut, a Laker high cut, or a slide to the corner, or an "X-cut" (see Layer 12 below).

Note that the passer does NOT cut on a skip pass (two spots away).

2. Pass receivers... if defender has a foot beyond the 3-point arc (aggressively denying pass), back-cut (diagram N). We call this "one foot over the read line" => back-cut. The next perimeter player over will naturally rotate into this vacated spot and is usually open.

3. After the cut, open spots are filled from the baseline up, and the basket-cutter fills the open corner spot.

Read and React offense - pass and cutRead and React offense - pass and cutRead and React offense - pass and cut

Cutting Options...
After passing, a cutter may be "stood up" by the defender who impedes and prevents his cut. Instead of fighting the defender, we use coach Bob Knight's "corner" principle... the cutter just simply moves sideways and screens-away (diagrams O and P).

Read and React offense - pass and cut Read and React offense - pass and cut

A perimeter player may wish to post up his defender inside (if he is a natural post player, or if he has a size mis-match, or if his defender is in foul trouble). Diagram N shows O4 passing, cutting inside and then "shaping up to the ball", or posting up.

A perimeter player may pass and cut and then screen for a post player inside before filling back out to the perimeter (diagram Q). We also call this "chipping" or "bumping" the post defender. So "pass and cut" becomes "pass, cut, and screen". A perimeter player could also pass, cut and back-screen for another perimeter player (see Layer 8 below).

Read and React offense - pass and cut Read and React offense - pass and cut

Layer #4, Post-player adjustment to dribble-penetration

Rules...
1. If dribble comes from baseline, post slides up to elbow (diagram R).
2. If dribble comes from the top, post moves to short corner (diagram S).
3. Rules 1 and 2 apply whether post if ball-side or weak-side.

Read and React offense - post reaction to dribble penetration Read and React offense - post reaction to dribble penetration

Get all 17 layers of the Read and React Offense, then detailed Read and React animation, and the Read and React Zone Offense! Become a Premium Member or get the Deluxe CD or downloads to get the complete article and animation.

Other layers included in the full article:

Layer #5, Dribble at - Back-cut

Layer #6, Power Dribble and Hand-off

Layer #7, Circle-Reverse

Layer #8, Back-screens

Layer #9, Multiple Staggered Screens

Layer #10, Advanced Post Player Reactions

Layer #11, 4-Out, 1-in Post Blocking

Layer #12, 4-out, 1-in Post Passing - Lakers Cuts, X-Cut, Corner Slide

Layer #13, 3-Out, 2-in Dribble-Penetration Game

Layer #14, Counter Help-side Defense - Pin and Skip Pass

Layer #15, Attacking Zone Defenses - the Read and React Zone Offense

Layer #16, Seamless Transition from Fast-break to Half-Court Offense

Layer #17, Flowing from Set to Set

Read and React detailed animation




Watch this Rick Torbett's preview of the Read and React.



Get Rick Torbett's Read and React DVD set for the full scoop, including all the important breakdown drills.


Related pages: 3-Out Read and React Offense, Review of Rick Torbett's Read and React Offense DVDs