December 17, 2004, Newsletter Issue #193: BREAKING THE HALFCOURT TRAP

Tip of the Week

Some General rules in attacking a half court trap are to:
1.Advance the ball until you feel pressure
2.Draw the trap
3.Look straight ahead
4.Look diagonal to the middle
5.Reverse the ball
Hint: if they are all covered and the ball is being trapped - the deep person is open

More specifically
1. Use a 2-1-2 alignment
2. Keep your guards on the lines that divide the court lengthwise into thirds. In other words, stay away from the sidelines.
3. Place a player in the middle (diagonal) between the two circles.
4. Two players should start at the foul line extended(straight ahead). They should be active.
5. Your guard with the ball should bring the ball up the court with his head up looking for the strongside straight ahead or to the middle . He should never dribble the ball into the front court unless he is sure he can take 3 or 4 dribbles AFTER crossing ½court. Try not to dribble the ball over ½court unless you pass thru the center circle. Most teams want you to cross ½court and pick up your dribble so they can trap you on the sideline.
6. If the ball goes to the strongside straight ahead), he should look for the center who slashing ball side to the basket.
7. If the ball goes to the middle, look away from the direction of the pass and pass to the weakside forward who is slashing backdoor to the basket.
8. If the guard cannot pass to either of these two, we reverse the ball to the other guard (before the ball crosses ½court) who is always behind the first guard. He then attacks the weakside looking straight ahead or diagonal as before.
9. Always attack the strongside, this allows the weakside to open.
10. Once you have the ball in the front court, keep attacking via the pass. Try to score before they can recover. Place an emphasis on offensive rebounding, as it is difficult to get a good defensive blockout when the team is trapping.

Some additional tips would be:
Never pick up your dribble without knowing where you will pass the ball.
Encourage, or draw, the double team and then pass before they can set it up.
Remain poised. Don`t let one mistake lead to 2 or 3
Beat them up the court by fast breaking, then they cannot set up their press.

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