Executing Off-Ball Screens

What to Discover or Recall:

To be a really successful team, all players must have an unselfish attitude and work hard to create open shots opportunities for their teammates. This translates into setting and using proper screens.
It is the sole responsibility of the receiver, not the screener, to run their defender into the screen.
In most cases, when a good screen is set, the screener will become the primary pass receiver.
However, most players, all the way to and including the professional level, are ill prepared when it comes to executing off ball screening.

 

Off Ball Screens Components

Fundamental Player Skills Required

If you analyze off ball screens, you will see that they are complex tactics requiring the proper execution and coordination on the part of three different players carrying out three different, but critical, roles: The Passer, The Screener and the Receiver. Players can expect to be required to carry out each of the three roles successfully during a game. This means practice and a having a solid, working knowledge of off ball screening fundamentals.

 

Learn More  THE SCREENER - A good screen usually results in an open shot.

Learn More  THE RECEIVER - Responsible for setting up and using the screen.

Learn More  THE PASSER - A good shot starts with a good pass.

Learn More  TYPES of OFF BALL SCREENS - Reads & Counters.

 


 

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Screener Graphic

Screener's Actions

Official Basketball Rules

Basically, there are two rules to adhere to when it comes to setting legal screens.

  1. The screener cannot be moving and must have both feet on the ground. The screener cannot lean or extend any body part (arm, leg, shoulder, hip, knee, etc.) to impede a defender.

    It is the sole responsibility of the receiver, not the screener, to run their defender into the screen.

  2. In setting a back or blind screen, the defender must be given room to turn completely around. This normally is a distance of one full step or an arm's length from the defender.

Violation of these screening rules will result in a personal foul. However, once a legal screen has been set, it is up to the defender to avoid contact.

The Screener Action - Off Ball Screens

Setting Solid Screens

In most cases, when a good screen is set, the screener will become the primary pass receiver.

 


Screener's Reads & Counters

In basketball, it is the defense that dictates offensive options, not the offense. Therefore, the ability to read and counter defensive actions is paramount to any offensive success. In addition, on screens, it is just as important for the screener to read and counter defensive deployment as the receiver.

Defensive Reads: What if the defense . . . .

Click on desired defensive read below to view illustrated counter option.

  1. The receiver's defender CHEATS OVER the screen early?

  2. The defender TRAILS the receiver over the screen?

  3. The defenders SWITCH on the screen?

  4. The screener's defender "SHOWS & RECOVERS"?

  5. The receiver's defender GOES UNDER the screen?

The Screener Reads & Counters

Read: Defender ANTICIPATES the screen and cheats over the screen early.

Counter: Screen & Replace

The receiver should back cut to the basket for shot, and the screener must then step out to the ball replacing the receiver.

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The Screener Reads & Counters

Read: Defender TRAILS the receiver over the screen and the receiver CURLS to the basket.

Counter: Screen & Replace

When the receiver curls and cuts to the basket, the screener must then step out to the ball replacing the receiver.

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The Screener Reads & Counters

Read: Receiver BACK CUTS to basket against the defender's strong overplay.

Counter: Screen & Replace

When the receiver back cuts to the basket, the screener must step then out to the ball replacing the receiver to keep the court balanced.

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The Screener Reads & Counters

Read: After setting a solid screen, the defense SWITCHES.

Counter: Screen & Roll

Screener seals off the receiver's defender and rolls to basket for shot or post up.

The Screener Reads & Counters

Read: The defenders SWITCH on screen.

Counter: Screen & Pop

On a switch, the screener also has the option of popping out for a spot up shot rather than rolling to the basket.

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The Screener Reads & Counters

Read: The screener's defender "SHOWS & RECOVERS on screen."

Counter: Slip the Screen

When the screener's defenders "Shows" on the screen, the screener immediately breaks off the screen and cuts away to the basket for shot.

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The Screener Reads & Counters

Read: The receiver's defender GOES UNDER the screen.

Counter: Roll & Rebound

When the receiver's defender goes under the screen, the receiver pops out for open shot and the screener rolls to basket for shot or rebound.

 

 


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Recever Graphic

Receiver's Actions

It is the sole responsibility of the receiver to set up the defender and use a screen properly.

Setting Up Screen

Utilizing the Screen

"Centering" the Screen

With head up and eyes on passer, "Center" the screen by stepping toward the screener. Then step over the screen with outside foot extending a target hand. This will force the defender into either going over or under the screen.

Centering the Screen

The receiver should receive the ball facing the passer in a knees flexed, triple threat position. This will allow the receiver to execute either a front or reverse pivot.

Front Turn

Front Turn

Receiver squares up to the basket by executing a front pivot. This will provide for a quick jump shot when the defender is slow closing out or has their hands down. If the defender should cheat over the screen, the receiver should fade to the baseline for an open shot.

Reverse Turn

Reverse Turn

Receiver pivots on inside foot and while executing a low, knees flexed, drop step with outside foot. If the defender overplays the passing lane, the reverse turn will allow for a quick drive to the basket. If the defense switches the receiver can make a bounce or wrap around pass into the post who also executes a reverse turn against the smaller defender.

Receiver's Reads & Counters

The basic reads and counters include: If the receiver's defender cheats over the screen early, the receiver back cuts to the basket. When the defender chases over the screen, the receiver should curl to the basket. If the defenders switch, look for the screener rolling to the basket. Anytime the screener's defender "Shows & Recovers," the screener should slip the screen and cut away to the basket. And, lastly, if the defender goes under the screen, the receiver should "Pop Out" for open jumper.

Defensive Reads: What if the defense . . . .

Click on desired defensive read below to view illustrated counter option.

  1. The receiver's defender DOES NOT REACT to screener's initial basket step?

  2. The defender TRAILS THE RECEIVER over the screen?

  3. The receiver's defender GOES UNDER the screen?

  4. The receiver's defender CHEATS OVER the screen early?

  5. The receiver's defender FIGHTS OVER the screen and denies the passing lane?

  6. The defenders SWITCH on the screen?

  7. The screener's defender "SHOWS & RECOVERS" on the screen?

  8. The receiver's defender GETS THROUGH the screen?

The Screener Reads & Counters

Read: The defender anticipates the screen and DOES NOT REACT to the receiver's initial basket step.

Counter: Back Cut

When the defender does not react to the initial basket step, the receiver should back cut to the basket for an easy shot.

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The Screener Reads & Counters

Read: The defender TRAILS the receiver over the screen.

Counter: Curl

When the defender trails, the receiver curls to the basket.

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The Screener Reads & Counters

Read: The defender GOES UNDER the screen.

Counter: Pull Up

When the defender goes under the screen, the receiver should anticipate pulling up for an open jumper or spot up shot.

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The Screener Reads & Counters

Read: When the defender anticipates and CHEATS OVER SCREEN EARLY.

Counter: Basket Back Cut

If the defender cheats over the screen early, the receiver back cuts to basket for shot.

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The Screener Reads & Counters

Read: When the defender FIGHTS OVER the screen and strongly denies the passing lane.

Counter: Basket Back Cut

The receiver can also back cut to the basket for shot, anytime the defender over plays and denies the passing lane.

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The Screener Reads & Counters

Read: When the defense SWITCHES on screen.

Counter: Screen & Roll (or Pop)

When the defense switches, imitate screen and rolls action with the receiver continues cut to the ball taking full advantage of any isolation mismatches.

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The Screener Reads & Counters

Read: When the defense "SHOWS & RECOVERS."

Counter: Slip the Screen

When the screener's defender "Shows", the screener immediately breaks off the screen and cuts away to the basket for shot and the receiver continues their cut to the ball.

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The Screener Reads & Counters

Read: When the defender RECOVERS on the screen.

Counter: Triple Threat

Upon receiving a pass the receiver assumes a triple threat attack position ready to Shoot, Drive or Pass.

Shot Selection

 

Learn More - Click Here  Ten Sure Ways to Improve Your Shooting

 

 


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The Passer

The Passer - Off-Ball Screens

'A good shot starts with a good pass'

The ability to move the ball separates the good players from the mediocre ones and the good ball clubs from the poor ones.

Passing Fundamentals

Maintain proper spacing

 

Learn More - Click Here  Raising Your Level of Passing

 

 


 

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