Two defensive transition drills to pick up the pace From Will Mayer, Middletown North High School, New Jersey

Here are two very competitive drills that improve your player’s ability to recover in transition defense.


DIAGRAM 1: Never-Too-Late Drill. The drill runs for three minutes, and then offense and defense switch off. Player C inbounds the ball to 1 or 2. X2, starting at the hash mark, gets back on defense while X1 (who’s positioned on the opposite foul line) sprints in from behind to provide catch-up help defense in transition. Put a scoring system in place where an offensive basket counts for one point, and any defensive stop or turnover results in minus two points for the offensive team. After both teams have played offense for the three minutes, the team with the least amount of points runs laps.


DIAGRAM 2: Two-Player Recovery Drill. Using the same time limits and scoring system as the previous drill, 1 begins the drill by passing to 2. 2 passes to 3. Players 3 and 4 attack X1 in a 2-on-1 situation.

X2 must sprint back as soon as 1 makes his or her pass and tries to provide defensive help in transition. The offense rotates after each possession in the following manner: 5 to 1’s spot; 1 to 2’s spot; 2 to 3’s spot; 3 to the end of 4’s line; and 4 to the end of 1’s line.