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How to select your inbound plays?

As everybody knows, basketball is a game of details.

So far this season, 43% of the games are decided within a margin of two possessions in the Euroleague.

How important are out-of-bounds plays to you as a coach?

Unlike setplays, the defense on an inbounds cannot prevent to get the ball to that specific location at the sideline or baseline.

Also, the defense can only have limited ball pressure (behind the line) on the entry pass.

So do you think the choice and execution of your inbound plays can make the difference between winning and losing?

I do.  I see a window of opportunity to create an advantage over the opponent with limited effort.

What should you be looking for when trying to create an edge with your playbook?

For me, there are four boxes to check when choosing my BLOB’s and SLOB’s.

While I want to share them with you in this article, I will illustrate them by video breakdowns of ALBA Berlin.  Coach Israel Gonzalez is one of the coaches that takes best advantage of these dead-ball situations in the Euroleague.

Here we go! 👇

1. Have several options to inbound the ball

After being scouted, it’s important to have counters and different entries into the same structure.  Turning the ball over on the entry-pass is the last thing you want.  For sure with one of your players behind the baseline (defensive transition will be complicated)

Ideally, all 4 players on the court provide an option to inbound the ball:

2. Keep the defense honest

When the opponent takes away an option, there has to be an easy but effective counter!

Prepare your team for the different defensive plans you might face.

As a staff, you should sit together and ask yourself how YOU would defend your own play, and prepare for these scenarios.

3. Possibilities to add small wrinkles / quickhitters

Coming out of a time-out or with a simple signal, the play can be modified slightly into a quick hitter.  After my intro of this article, I don’t have to convince you anymore of the importance of having 1 or 2 easy baskets, right?

In situations where the opponent will try to foul you, it’s even necessary that the assist is given from out-of-bounds…

ALBA has impressed a lot in the Euroleague with this situations:

4. Go into a flow.

Go into a flow.  If we don’t have an advantage from the first pass, I want to create ball movement right away

Often this will come down to reversing the ball quickly to the other side of the court, so the defense has to shift for a first time from side to side.

Well, that’s it!  These are my 4 checkboxes when composing my BLOB’s and SLOB’s.

I hope it gives you some food for thought.

Thanks for your time and I’ll be back soon with more content!

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