David Blatt Euro Sets

In my time playing overseas here is one of my favorite sets that I've come across because of its flexibility, movement, and variety of options. Although NBA Cleveland Cavs coach David Blatt doesn't coach overseas anymore, this is the type of stuff he used to win his Euroleague title and 5 Israeli League Championships.

The following are the some of the primary options you can run with this "Euro Set", but as you'll see, any coach can adjust the spacing and timing depending on their personnel. Scroll to the end of the post to download the entire set as a PDF.

The initial alignment starts with the point guard dribbling the wing and the guard coming off a double staggered on to the top of the key. 

Below is the basic spacing for the rest of the options in this particular set. Out of this alignment we have a ton of nifty options

Option 1: PG swings the ball to G at the top of the key and then C runs to set a high ball-screen for G coming off to the open side of the floor. After F screens for C they should space out to the opposite side short corner. 

Option 1: As G drives to the open side of the floor, C should dive to the rim for an easy dish if C's defender overhelps on the pick and roll. Alternately, F should fill the high post to draw his defender away from helping on the pick and roll. Lastly, PG should keep the backside occupied by setting a down screen for SG to come to the wing.

Option 1: This is the visual representation of all the options G has coming off the high ball screen (in addition to scoring themselves). A great option to get a good player going downhill with a lot of scoring options.

Option 2 : Going back to the original alignment, the second option is for SG in the corner coming off a gate screen for a 3-pointer (feel free to change the screen to a double staggered along the baseline if your player prefers shooting off that)

Option 2 : G should dribble away from the double screen a few dribbles to create spacing as SG starts to sprint between the gate screen set by C and F. PG should replace SG in the corner for increased spacing. 

Option 3 : The last option includes a post up option for bigger guards, a guard pick and roll, and a double stagger for a shooter. Again here is the original alignment after G comes off the double screen from F and C.

Option 3 : G has the ball at the top of key, and SG runs the baseline to leave PG on the wing with an open side of the floor. G can look to throw a backdoor pass for PG if overplayed. Otherwise G can throw the ball to PG and set a ball screen. If you have a big guard with post up skills this is a good way to take advantage of PG's smaller defender switching onto a bigger guard

Option 3 : PG now comes off the ball screen with an option to attack the rim, exploit the mismatch with G rolling to the block, or looking for SG coming off a double staggered for a 3-pointer.

Option 3 : Here you can see all of the scoring options. After they set the double down screen for SG, F should space to the wing and C to the short corner. 


 

 

Killer OBU Plays

Philosophy

Any good coach knows that games can be won or lost on the margins. What are exactly are the margins? Basically, the little things can make all the difference: player rotations, timeouts, substitutions, game prep, scouting, and….OUT OF BOUNDS PLAYS could be the difference between a 1 point win and a devastating loss. The reality is that individually this stuff on the margins is not significant enough to directly lead to a win or a loss, but over the course of an entire game it can have a big impact.

Out of Bounds underneath (OBU) is one specific area of the game that coaches have a high degree of control over. Creative OBU plays can lead directly to scores and will help your team steal a couple of cheap buckets throughout the course of the game. These easy buckets are invaluable and can demoralize an opponent’s psyche.

Unfortunately, a team only gets a limited number of opportunities to sting their opponents with a cleverly designed play. In reality you might have 5-10 chances to score from an OBU possession during a game. The following are 3 killers OBU plays to help push your team over the top. In addition to the OBU play diagrams we will include a description of the responsibilities of each player within the set, as well as counters and other tidbits of valuable information to make sure you get the most out of your OBU opportunities.

We have put together a short E-Book with 2 additional bonus plays and a list of 5 Ways to Improve your Screening. All of this is FREE. Just click here to download the entire PDF.

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Terminology

The OBU positions are all interchangeable depending on how you want to use your personnel, some coaches may want to target a specific defender, or put players in positions depending on their strengths.

 

PG – Point Guard (1-man or primary ball handler)

SG – Shooting Guard (2-man)

G – Guard (3-man)

F – Forward (4-man)

C – Center (5-man)

 

Key: the combination of the free throw lane and free throw circle

Downscreen: when a player (usually a 4 or 5 man) sets a screen facing the baseline for another player (usually a 2 or 3 man) to come off the screen either towards the perimeter or into the lane looking to score.

Backscreen: when a player is facing towards half court and sets a screen for a player diving to the rim. Usually a good backscreen hits the defender in the “back” or on the “blindside” 

Lane: the rectangular area below the free throw line

Perimeter: the area around the 3pt line

Slip: when a player (usually a 4 or 5 man) sets a screen for a teammate but their defender hedges out or helps to cover the player coming off the screen, leaving the screen to “slip” or go to the rim uncovered

Cross-screen: when a player moves across the lane to set a screen (usually this is a player setting a screen for a 4 or 5 man to get inside position)

For a more complete list of terms visit Arete Hoops Glossary of Terms.

 

 

Box Box-1

BOX is a simple concept, but incredibly effective if you can be disciplined enough to run the play the right way.

The Guard needs to clear out and the SG should start their movement as the Guard is clearing out to the opposite wing.

All screens in BOX need to be “Head-Hunting” screens, meaning that each player searches for the defender of their teammate instead of looking to scree an area.

That means that regardless of where the defender drifts to on the floor the offensive player needs to find that defender and hit them with a hard screen.

Box-3

As SG sets a screen for F, C needs to be moving to towards SG to screen SG’s defender to catch them distracted by the screen between SG and F.

SG is the first option coming off the C screen. If C gets the timing right they can often catch SG’s defender paying attention to the screen on F’s man.

Box-2

Many teams will try to switch the screen between C and SG but this works well for the offense if C rolls strong to the rim keeping the switching defender behind them.

Last option is to fake the ball towards the C/SG screening action and kick the ball out to F in the corner or G on the wing.

 

Stack Opposite

Stack Opp - 1

The entire premise of Stack Opposite is to get the defense moving to the other side of the floor then using a cutter that counters that movement.

C and SG need to sprint and draw attention from their defenders so that F’s defender gets distracted by the movement of players to the ball-side of the floor.

G should start their cut as if he is following the lead of C and SG, but instead go and set a screen for F.

Stack Opp - 2

The key to the play is for F to make the defender think he is following the other cutters to the ball side of the floor by making a hard step towards the ball.

After F’s hard step he comes off G’s screen for a layup.

Just as in BOX, if the defenders switch the screening action, G will be open rolling to the rim.

 

 

Flare

Flare is a great play to run against zone or man-to-man because it puts the defense in a position to choose what they want to cover.

Flare -1

The initial screen between SG and F should be a quick scoring option if F’s defender falls asleep. But the goal of this screen is actually to get SG’s defender out of position to set them up for the next action.

Flare - 2

After SG sets the screen they should run off C’s screen to the corner or baseline for a jumpshot.

If SG sets a good screen for F then his defender should be behind the play and should have trouble fighting over C’s screen.

Flare - 2

 

PG has the important job of reading the defense to see whether or not SG is open for a shot, or if C’s man has jumped out into the passing lane, opening a slip for C to the rim.

If the defense has collapsed and cut off both of these options, G could be open for a jumper on the wing if PG does a good job of faking the pass to the baseline.

 

Summary

This gives you a good idea of how simple Out of Bounds Plays can convert into easy points for your team during the course of a game. These 4-6 easy points could be the difference in winning and losing close, competitive games. We have put together an entire PDF with 2 Additional plays and a BONUS 5 Tips to Improve your Team’s Screening.

The download is FREE, all you need to do is click the text below, enter your email address and click on the confirmation email and you can download the entire PDF.

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Click Here to Download!