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Basketball Plays - Weave-Screen Plays

By Dr. James Gels, from the Coach’s Clipboard Basketball Playbook... lots of great basketball stuff. Come on - join today.

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A simple weave-screen play is an effective way to set up your good outside shooter for a 3-pointer, or a for "take" into the paint. I am showing this play using a 3-out, 2-in set but you can run it from really any set, including the 4-out, 1-in motion offense or the 5-out open post motion offense.

Another situation where this is helpful is when the wing defenders are doing a good job denying the pass to your good wing shooter. If you recognize this situation, you can call this play from the bench. With this play, you don't have to pass the ball to get it to the wing. It's just a simple, old-fashioned weave-type hand-off from the point guard to the wing player, with the point guard setting the screen.

"W2" & "W3"

You can call the play whatever you want... "W2" (meaning the weave-screen play is going to O2). Call "W3" for the play to go to O3 instead. See the diagrams below. With "W2" the point guard dribbles over to O2, makes the handoff to O2, while screening off his/her defender. O2 comes around the screen, getting the hand-off and can pop out for the 3-point shot (this screen usually results in enough spacing for an open shot). Optionally, if the X1 defender plays up tight to deny the outside shot, O2 can beat the defender and make a move into the paint for a pull-up jumper.

Weave-Screen Plays Weave-Screen Plays Weave-Screen Plays

"Back" Option

After running W2 or W3 a few times, teams start looking for it and X2 will try to come over the screen and jam the hand-off, while X1 will "jump-switch" the screen. The counter for this is the "Back" option. See diagram C above. With the back option, O2 fakes toward the ball, lets the defender come along and then suddenly back-cuts for the bounce pass and lay-up. Notice that we position O4 up at the weakside high post to clear O2's path to the basket. If the X5 defender slides over, O2 can pass to O5.


Some years we have a talented O4 who can play inside or outside. W4 is a good weave-screen play that gets O4 the ball at the top with a handoff screen from O1. We start with O4 on the left wing (like in our 4-out setup). O3 first screens for O4 and as O4 comes to the top, O1 dribbles at O4 for the weave-screen hand-off.

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O4 comes around the screen for the shot, or takes it to the hoop. If there is not enough spacing inside, we might move O5 out to the short corner. Of course another option is a pass inside to O5 (if the X5 defender slides over to stop O4). Additionally, O2 could get a kick-out pass from O4 (if the X2 defender sags inside).


Here is another extension of the weave hand-off. I have seen teams run this play very effectively several times until the defense finally realizes that they must switch every screen. Usually one of the defenders forgets and an opening is created.

Here, O1 can make the weave hand-off to O2 just as above. Then O2 dribbles to the left along the 3-point arc and sets a weave-screen and hand-off for O3. O3 then dribbles right and screens and hands-off to O1. O1 then dribbles back left and hands-off to O2.

If O2 is your best scorer, now O2 might have the opportunity to suddenly come around the weave-screen and drive aggressively into the paint for the inside shot or lay-up. Of course, any of the players could make the drive inside if the opening is there.

In running this play, start with a 5-out set, putting your post players out in the short corners, so the inside is wide open for the eventual drive up the middle.

Related page: Weave-Screen Shooting Drills

Helpful DVDs:

Many DVDs of basketball plays at the Coach's Clipboard Basketball DVD Store

Basketball Set Plays
There are many DVDs of set plays in the Coach's Clipboard Basketball DVD Store... too numerous to list here. Areas covered include man and zone plays, out-of-bounds plays, endline and sideline sets, and end-of-game plays. There are DVDs with special plays for motion offenses, 4-out 1-in offense, 1-4 high offense, flex offense, pick and roll offense, and others.

Many DVDs of basketball plays at the Coach's Clipboard Basketball DVD Store

Special Situations & Inbounds Plays
Many more basketball DVDs at the Coach's Clipboard Basketball DVD Store In additon to many baseline and sideline out-of-bounds plays, some of the greatest basketball coaches today stress the importance of special situations that can often determine the outcomes of close games. Situations discussed include: Opening tip, free-throw situations, end of shot clock, end of half, down with under two-minutes and inbounds plays.

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