Listen to 300+ podcasts by best-selling authors, published Wednesday, 4pm EST!

Basketball Guards Tips

Read these 12 Basketball Guards Tips tips to make your life smarter, better, faster and wiser. Each tip is approved by our Editors and created by expert writers so great we call them Gurus. LifeTips is the place to go when you need to know about Basketball tips and hundreds of other topics.

Basketball Guards Tips has been rated 4.3 out of 5 based on 1882 ratings and 10 user reviews.

Get Back!

One of the most important jobs as a Guard is to get back on defense. This means never getting "sucked" in too deep, allowing for easy buckets in transition. Usually the Point Guard is responsible for getting back, but if the Point Guard penetrates the defense, it is then the Shooting Gaurd who is responsible for protecting the basket against the fast break. Good communication is key. Not doing so will lead to uncontested points for the opposing team.


Post-Entry Pass

The post entry pass is any pass that goes down to a player who is posting up a defender. The post entry pass is a highly undeveloped skill that, if done INcorrectly, will cost your team possessions, get you benched by your coach, and will seriously irritate your big man who worked so hard to get his post position in the first place.

The biggest mistake players make is telegraphing the pass, or letting the defense know what you want to do well before you actually do it. When your big man is ready for the ball he will hold is hand out to tell you where he wants it. When this happens, you not only have to worry about the defender on his back, but also your defender, both of whom want the ball that you possess. This is when you implement one of my basics of offensive basketball. "Show the defender the exact opposite of what you want to do".

Example. If your big man wants the ball high and away, fake a pass down low and then quickly pass the ball over the top, hitting the target your big man has given you. If he wants the ball low and away, show the exact opposite. Fake a pass high and then quickly give him a low, bounce pass away from his defender. It's that simple. Always show the opposite of what you actually want to do.

How can I help my team?

Pressure the ball

Guards need to keep constant pressure on the passer or ball handler, forcing them off of their desired path of attack. This will help your big men by forcing the offense into uncomfortable situations, often times taking post players away from their "sweet" spots on the court.


Getting Open

Perimeter players will often need to create space from their defenders so that they can recieve a pass from a teammate. Usually the best way to get open is to use a "V-cut"(see Footwork section). Time the V-cut so that as you are coming out of the cut, your teammate is ready to pass the ball.

How can I help my team?

Stop dribble penetration

Guards have to stop dribble penetration on defense. Dribble penetration is the one killer of all defenses. Allowing penetration will create chaos, lead to foul trouble, and of course easy baskets.


Keep Your Bigs Happy!

There is nothing worse than a guard neglecting his big men. They are your work horses. They are the ones that "have your back" whenever you get beat off the dribble. They grab the rebounds that lead to your fast breaks. They are the ones that finish around the rim when you penetrate and dish. For all this hard work, you MUST reward them with some looks down low.

Also, if a big man catches it down low, tries to make a move, then passes it back out, go right back down to him every once in a while. This lets him know that he can repost to get better position without having to worry about never getting the ball back from you(Shaq is a master at this). What happens too often, is a big man will turn into a "black-hole" when he gets the ball, because he never thinks he'll get it back once it leaves his hand. Trust your big man, soon after, your big man will trust you and he will not "force" the action down low. He will be patient, and will make the best "play" for you and your team. The big man/guard relationship is very important to team chemistry and success.

What is the most common mistake?

Keep the Dribble Alive

The most common mistake of inexperienced basketball players is "giving up their dribble". Once this happens, the defense is taught to collapse on you, trap you, and feed on this deadly mistake. Coaches can´t emphasize this enough. Once you start your dribble, you should only stop to pass or shoot the ball.


Know When to Run

One of the most important quality in guards nowadays is the ability to run the fast break. As a guard, your job is to know when you have numbers, when you don't. Also knowing when to pass the ball on the break is important. Make sure you pass the ball at the optimal time to allow your teammate to be successful. Giving a pass to your 7' center 20 feet away from the basket is not smart. Allow your big man to be successful, and reward him for running the court by giving it to him in a position to score.


Become UnGuardable

Becoming Unguardable is NOT a selfish goal. When you become unguardable you can exploit and breakdown the defense, leading to a high percentage "PLAY" for your team. Notice I said "play" instead of shot. This is because many times after you blow by your defender, help comes and the pass is the high percentage play. Like Spiderman's uncle said, "With great power comes great responsibility." When you use these tips to make yourself unguardable, don't use your powers for evil. You are not Michael Jordan, you are not Kobe Bryant, you are not Dwayne Wade. Only a select few have the ability to take 35 shots a game without being considered selfish. Their supreme abilities (not to mention the referees favorable whistles) makes their style affective and makes them winners. This should not be your goal. Again, the correct play many times is a kickout, or a dump down for a lay-up/shot. That is how you defeat your opponents. You make more high percentage plays than they do.


Be a Triple Threat

All guards must be able to score and make plays from the Triple Threat position(see section on Triple Threat Postion). Many times within an offense, guards will receive the ball in this position, and the more effective you are from Triple Threat, the more effective you will be in your offense.

How do I penetrate and dish?

Penetrate and Dish

The secret to a successful penetrate and dish is keep your head up as you dribble, always being a threat to score. As you beat your man, and as the help defender is coming toward you, pass off to your teammate at the last possible moment, leading to easy buckets and headaches for any defense. Another tip is when you dish it off, try and pass while you are on the ground, not in the air. If you go up in the air to pass, a defensive player can jump in front of you for a charge, or could jump into that passing lane... and then you are stuck. Many turnovers are created this way.

I am looking for moves to penetrate the double team.

Penetrating The Double Team

If you want to penetrate the double team, ball security is key, as it usually is. You want to use either a strong dribble or a strong step though to get by a double team. If a big man is involved in the double team, attack the Big Man's outside foot. Use your quickness to get around him. Use strong ball fakes and strong dribbles to get by a double if the immediate pass is not available.

Not finding the advice and tips you need on this Basketball Tip Site? Request a Tip Now!

Guru Spotlight
Ray Lokar