Monday, August 20, 2012

Defending the Basket: Doubling The Post

Doubling the post on defense is a method of defending and limiting the effectiveness of an opponents post player. Most coaches when they hear or talk about doubling the post they envision a team with a powerful, dominating post player. What if I told you that doubling a weak post player was just if not more beneficial than doubling a strong one. Your first thought would be why bother? There's no need to "waste" another defender on a post player that isn't a scoring threat. By doubling the post every time you can incorporate a strategy that will change the way teams prepare for you. After all, that's what we as coaches want; your opponent focusing their time on you and not on their teams. Here are a couple of thoughts on doubling the post.

#1 Reasons to Double:
*  First it forces teams to make shots outside the "smile" (think Charge arc under basket). Doubling forces the offense to take and make contested shots.
*  Doubling increases the game tempo. Think of doubling the post as a full court or half court trap. It creates confusion.
* It makes your defense active and engaged. Even if you are playing man to man defense their are times when your defense becomes stagnant. Doubling makes an active defense even more active.
* It is interchangeable. You can choose to double different ways, with different players. It can be made to fit your personnel.

#2 Rules on Player Positioning to Double:
     #1 Rule for Post Defense: It starts with Ball Pressure.
* Never let the ball enter the post from the top of the floor. If the ball is above the free throw line, "full front (butt front) to force any pass to the post to be a lob to the backboard. (This allows help to attack the ball in the air like a defensive back in football). 
                * Side-note: When you are full fronting, have your player sit on the offensive player's leg and
                                    defend with both hands. This position allows your player to defend the lob pass and 
                                     also draws attention to any push off by the offense.
* Play behind when the ball is on the wing or in the corner.
   * Defending from behind
             1. On catch defender has to have his nose level to offensive players chest.
             2. Take the 1st initated contact. 2nd contact take the charge.
             3. On shot, hands go to eyes, walk into offensive player and block out.
* Move when ball moves. This is a normal teaching point for any defense but especially important when doubling the post. Anytime you use two defenders to guard one player the rest of the defense has to be quicker.
* On line Up line. This holds true whether you are doubling out of a man or zone defense. The backside has to be on the help line and up the help line. Up meaning in the passing lane. This takes away vision from the player being doubled and forces the offense to move.

#3 Choices on How to Double:
* On the pass (Best Option). Move when the ball is in the air. Again, think of doubling the post as you would a full court defense. On the entry pass to the post, the other 4 defenders have to react.
* On the catch. This is a way to disguise that the double is coming.
* On the bounce. If the post player uses a dribble to set up his offensive move, send the double team then.

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