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Basketball Drill - 2-on-1 Continuous Transition Drill

From the Coach’s Clipboard Basketball Playbook
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This is a good full-court drill that emphasizes transition offense and defense, conditioning, passing and catching on the move, 2-on-1 offense and 1-on-2 defense.

Divide into two teams, one on each sideline. See diagram A. We start by giving the ball to one team (blue), which starts with two players just inside half-court and one opposing defender (yellow) in the paint. The offensive players pass back and forth quickly until they reach the 3-point arc and then the player with the ball attacks the defender, with his teammate coming at a 45 degree angle on the opposite side.

The offense reads the defender and either attacks for a lay-up or a foul, or if the defender comes up, passes to the teammate cutting to the hoop. We have a second defender start on the sideline. Once the ball is beyond half-court he/she sprints out, touches the middle of the court, and sprints back to help the lone defender. The offense must attack quickly before that defender evens the odds at 2-on-2. The lone defender tries to delay or stop the offense.

Basketball drill, 2-On-1 Transition Offense and Defense Drill Basketball drill, 2-On-1 Transition Offense and Defense Drill

If the offense scores or gets fouled, they get one point. After a made basket, or if the offense turns the ball over, or misses the shot and the defenders get the rebound, the defenders are now on offense (diagram B) and speed-dribble and pass back and forth up the floor and attack the defender on the opposite end. And so it goes, back and forth up the court, non-stop. Each team keeps track of their score. We usually play to 10 or 12 (depending on how much time we have). Losers run.

Basketball drill, 2-On-1 Transition Offense and Defense Drill

After the two offensive players (blue) either score or lose the ball, they both go off to the back of their team's line on the sideline (diagram C). While play is going on at the opposite end, the last player in yellow's line sprints in to become the next solo defender. The first person in the yellow line will be the trailing defender sprinting out from half-court.

Offense Tips:
In the 2-on-1 situation, we want the player attacking with the ball to be aggressive and to think first of attacking the hoop for a lay-up or foul, with the pass as the second option. We don't want to settle for an outside jump shot in this drill. Usually an "in-and-out" dribble move
, or a "rocker-step, hesitation move"
is a good move for attacking in this situation. We do not want the player with the ball to cross-over as this brings him/her right into his own teammate - we want to keep the balance on both sides.

Defense Tips:
For 1-on-2 defense, we have a standard rule: "get as low as the lowest offensive player." This means that if there is an offensive player under the basket, the defender must be down low. We will give the opponent the outside jumper. It is a lower percentage shot than the lay-up, you avoid getting a foul, and you may get the rebound, or delay the offense long enough for your teammate to arrive on defense.

Sometimes defenders make the mistake of coming up away from the basket and challenging the ball, only to get beaten by an easy pass to the other player under the basket for a lay-up. The defender must stay back and "gap" the offensive players, hedge, and try to straddle and cut off the passing lane to the easy lay-up.