A Christmas gift for coaches with big post players

After watching games in person, on TV and online, and seeing post players not getting enough offensive touches, here’s my Christmas gift for coaches at all levels whose big men who wish they’d post up and get the ball more.

There are reasons post players don’t get enough offensive touches, but there are solutions to that problem.

1. They don’t want to post up, they want to face the basket and shoot 3’s. Players must understand that if they don’t post up when the offense puts them there, then they are going to sit on the bench until they do. All players should be able to post up to take advantages of mismatches.

2. They don’t know the team benefits from posting up: The toughest spot on the floor to defend is the low block area because players with the ball are so close to the basket and know when they are going to leave the floor to shoot. Their defenders don’t, so one-on-one there definitely favors offensive players and it gets them to the foul line more. It’s also the best way to get open 3’s or open layups when the post player is double-teamed.

3. They don’t know how to seal their defender: A defender guarding a post player can only play them one of 4 ways. In front, behind and on either side. Offensive players must use their bodies to seal properly.

4. They don’t show passer where they want the ball. They should raise nearest hand and arm straight up in the air depending on how they are being played defensively to seal properly and show the passer where they want the ball.

5. The passers don’t know when post players want the ball. When post players want the ball all they have to do is wiggle the fingers of their raised hand and that signals the passer — NOW.

6. When they get the ball they don’t look to see if they are going to be double-teamed. If not, then they should go one-on-one. If double-teamed they must look for the open teammate whose defender has doubled down on them. If the offensive player is a good 3-point shooter whose man has doubled down, they’ll be open for a clear 3. If the offensive player is not a good 3-point shooter, they should cut to the hoop for an open layup.

7. Teammates don’t look to get the ball inside to post players. To cure that, make a rule that nobody takes a shot until the post player on the block touches the ball once, unless it’s a layup — and they had better make the layup. If anyone breaks the rule by shooting before a post touch, they will be substituted for on the next whistle. Enforce this rule at all times, including practices, and it will become automatic. You’ll be surprised how quickly the perimeter players get the ball to the post player.

8. Not having an offense that has correct floor spacing: The two wings need to be even with foul line extended, just outside 3-point line. The two guards are even with free-throw lane line extended, just outside 3-point line, and the post is on either block in this 2-2-1 set. The attached diagram shows the correct spacing:

Now just run motion, pass and screen away, and post player 5 goes ball side on each pass looking for the ball.

9. Not understanding the three-second rule. If players have not been called for three seconds before they have received the ball, after receiving it they are allowed to dribble to the basket or use fakes before shooting. It’s important all the players understand there is additional time to shoot, so there’s no need to rush their shot.

If you’d like more info, call me at 356-6787 and I’ll be glad to oblige.

Merry Christmas to all!