Three inbound plays for any situation From Bob Hurley, Jersey City, New Jersey

Keeping a defense on its heels is one of the keys to having a potent offense. There are a variety of ways to be aggressive with a defense and one that we have found to be effective is to look to score on our in-bound plays.

Some coaches simply want to get the ball into play from out of bounds, which is understandable if you are nursing a lead late in the game. But, attacking the basket from the out-of-bounds area (under the hoop or from the sideline) is a sure way to beat a defense, no matter if they are playing zone or man-to-man.


DIAGRAM 1: Baseline out-of-bounds vs. zone. In this play, your in-bounder is looking to toss a lob to 5 or to pass to 2 in the corner. 4 slides “low” across the lane and off the opposite block. 5 curls around 4 for a potential lob pass. 4 screens the backside of the zone, which is designed to open up an area for 2 in the opposite corner for a shot. 2 goes from the backside elbow to the corner. 3 fades back toward the top of the key to create balance and to serve as a potential safety pass.


DIAGRAM 2: Baseline out-of-bounds vs. man. In this play, your in-bounder has two options cutting to the hoop (4 and 5) and one for an open jump shot (2). 5 screens for 2. 2 uses the screen to get open on the ball-side wing. 4 screens for 5. 5 rolls to the weak side for a potential lob pass. 4 then rolls toward the ball looking to score if passed the ball. 3 cuts toward the opposite wing, then reverses direction and ends outside the 3-point line for a potential safety pass.


DIAGRAM 3: Sideline out-of-bounds (A). In this play, your in-bounder has a potential backside lob pass available (4) or works a give-and-go with 2. 4 screens for 1. 1 comes from the opposite elbow, uses the screen and pops to the area outside the 3-point line. 2 cuts to the foul line to set a backscreen for 4. 4 rolls to the hoop looking for the potential backside lob pass from 3. 5 steps out toward the ball. 2 steps to the ball as well.


DIAGRAM 4: Sideline out-of-bounds (B). If 4 is open, the pass goes to 4 who is heading toward the basket. If 4 is not open, 3 passes to 2. 5 sets a screen for 3 as 3 enters the court. 3 uses the screen, moves toward the baseline area of the court and looks for a return pass back from 2.