Get the ball inbounds with the triple-option sideline play From Don Horwood, former head men's coach, University of Alberta, Edmonton, Canada

It’s maddening to watch teams struggle with the simplest tasks in a basketball game. For instance, getting the ball inbounds from the sideline should be an easy assignment. However, timeouts are wasted and five-second calls are made as teams aren’t prepared for this situation.

We have developed our triple-option sideline play to ensure we get the ball into play every time. With three options, it keeps the defense guessing and our offense one step ahead.

Triple-option sideline play

Horwood1DIAGRAM 1: Basic set. All three of the options are run from the basic set with 2 as the inbounder. 1, 4 and 5 are in a straight line from baseline toward midcourt and 3 on the opposite block.

Horwood2DIAGRAM 2: Option one (A). 1 screens for 5, then rolls to the corner. 2 passes to 5, who then passes to 3. 3 has come from the weak-side block to the wing to receive the pass from 5. 1 sets a backscreen for 2. 2 cuts underneath to the basket. 3 hits 2 for the layup.

Horwood3DIAGRAM 3: Option one (B). If 3 cannot pass to 2 because he is covered, he must look for Option B. Option B has 1 working off staggered screens from 4 and 5 to get to the top of the key. 3 passes to 1 for an open 3-pointer.

   » ALSO SEE: Learn 2 new baseline inbounds plays

Horwood4DIAGRAM 4: Option two (A). The second option from our basic set has 2 passing to 1, who broke to the corner area. 4 comes to the high junction. 4 receives a backscreen from 3 and moves toward the hoop. 1 throws over the top for an alley-oop dunk.

Horwood5DIAGRAM 5: Option two (B). If 1 sees that 3’s man has switched to prevent the alley-oop, then 1 passes to 3 as 3 rolls to the basket. This creates an easy layup for 3. 2 steps inbounds as another safety valve with 5.

Horwood6DIAGRAM 6: Option three. 4 flashes to the high post and receives the pass from 2. 4 immediately turns and passes to 3, who has sealed his man on the weak side of the floor. 3 scores on a strong drop-step move. Safety passes can go to 1 in the corner or to 5 at the top of the key.