Four Key Principles

The modern game is constantly evolving, however it does have some factors that will clearly be in the game for the future. The once slow paced, low scoring games of the nineties are a thing of the past. Due to rule changes inhibiting the defender from being physical, the game has become more fast paced because offensive players can get by defenders easier. This fast paced version of the game has led to more individual and advantage-based offense. The mismatches also lead to more individual offense since the skilled player can easily score on the weaker defender, rather than advanced plays being run. Therefore it requires team defense to stop an individually great player. The cycle continues, in order to counteract the individually great player being guarded by two or three defenders, everyone on the offense can shoot the ball from the perimeter, making it harder for the collective defense to key in on one player.

In order for players to have future success in the game of basketball, they should be encouraged to be developed for a fast paced game. Being ready for the physical toll of increased running, players should do cardio and other cardiovascular conditioning both in and out or practice. The fast paced, spaced out game also allows players to show off their athleticism as well. It should be encouraged that players train their flexibility, balance, and leaping ability in order to fully exploit the spread out defense. This agility also applies on the defensive end, if players do not have the stamina and speed to rotate on defense, then they could be a liability, as we see in the modern NBA.

Today players can force switches easier than ever, and get the best offensive player guarded by the weakest defensive player. Switches have led to more individual offense, or pick and rolls, rather than more advanced plays and offensive tactics such as The Triangle. When developing players preparing for this it is important for them to have both perimeter shooting abilities and dribble penetration abilities. When they have the ball both of these skills will be important for creating offense for themselves and for their teammates when the defense helps. When playing off-ball on the perimeter, the shooting ability will be important for when the defense helps off of them. If the defense closes out, they should also have the ability to dribble past the defender. Coaches can foster these skills for all players by having all players participate in all skills drills, as well as having players be allowed to showcase these skills during scrimmages and games.

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