Newsletter #254

December 7, 2022


Today's Quote:  "Basketball is not played simply with X’s and O’s. It’s played with both trust and confidence." - Isiah Thomas

Today's Theme... Zone Plays

We mostly attack zones with a general zone offense.  See: 2-3 Zone Offense and Attacking the 2-3 Zone

But at times, we will run a set zone play to get someone open for a good shot.  In teaching our system, we first teach our basic zone offense(s), and then add a few of these plays as the season progresses.

You can screen the zone.  Swing the ball to one side and as the zone shifts, back-screen the weakside of the zone.  If the play breaks down, our point guard recognizes this and resumes our usual zone offense.  An important part of any zone offense is offensive rebounding.  I'll present a couple plays here... go to 2-3 Zone Offense Plays for many more.

"Carolina":  This play is designed to attack the 2-3 zone from the back-side of the zone, using a skip pass and screening the back-side of the zone.  Younger kids may have difficulty making the long skip pass and might find "Zone-1X" a better alternative.

O1 passes to O2 (diagram A) causing the zone to shift.  O5 slides down into the weakside corner.  O3 back-screens the outside low zone defender so that O5 is open for the skip pass from O2.


As the pass is being made, O4 cuts to the ball-side elbow (diagram B). Once the pass is made, O3 lets the outside defender slip by out to the corner and O3 now screens the middle defender in the zone (diagram C).  O4 cuts off O3's screen to the block for the pass and lay-up.



"21" and "31":  Run this simple play either right ("21") or left ("31"). Here we show "21".

O1 dribbles at and engages the top defender on the side the play is run.  O2 screens the outside top zone defender for O1 to dribble around and shoot the mid-range jumper.  The opposite post O4 slides up to the opposite elbow to occupy the middle zone defender.  O1 can shoot the short pull-up jumper, or pass to O5 if the low defender X3 comes up to defend.  The opposite wing O3 should drop down inside to become a back-side rebounder.  After screening, O2 pops out on top as our safety.

21 zone play

Coach's Clipboard Premium Membership - join today! Immediate online access, comprehensive downloadable playbook included with offenses, defenses, plays, drills, coaching and player tips, animated diagrams, video clips, mobile-ready, pdfs for print-outs, and more! More info...
Coaches... get a group membership (deeply discounted) for all your coaches!

Coach's Clipboard Premium Membership

Put in a new offense or defense this season.
Run a special inbounds or buzzer-beater play and look like a genius!
Use a special defense to shutdown a star player.
Teach your team how to break a press.

Email your comments or suggestions.

Coach's Clipboard, US copyright, 2022, James A. Gels

Coach's Clipboard, Box 126, Charlevoix, MI 49720

facebook linkedIn linkedIn