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Coaching the Basketball 2-1-2 Strong Side Combination Defense

This defense utilizes the strengths of both zone and man-to-man defenses. It is a good defense to use against penetrating guards. The back three men play a triangle zone while the front two defenders play man-to-man against two outstanding opponents.

The zone players should permit outside shots but prevent penetration and close-in shots, all the while maintaining a defensive rebounding position. The two players playing man-to-man should either pressure the ball or cut-off all passing lanes. The can switch on crosses by the good offensive players, unless the game plan calls for a different coverage.

The triangle men should double-team either good two offensive players when they are in the defensive area of their particular zone. When pressure is applied man-to-man at half-court, the three zone players should be close enough to opponents to cut off passing lanes to them without leaving the basket unguarded. Should one of these opponents receive the ball, his defender should apply pressure in an effort to cause a ball-handling error.

This defense has three weaknesses:

  1. If either of the 3 players being zoned is a good three-point shooter.
  2. If one of the three being zoned is a good pivot player.
  3. If opponents  are allowed to penetrate the back line of the zone from the weak side.

This defense has three strengths:

  1. A good defense against two good ball handlers.
  2. Presents good fast-break opportunities.
  3. It allows the two players playing man-to-man to take chances.
  4. It allows for very aggressive play.
  5. The nonconformist superiority of this defense makes it an effective surprise maneuver.
  6. It has team defensive elements that allow backboard control.
  7. It keeps pressure on the ball.
  8. It has excellent defensive coverage near the basket and the pivot area.
  9. It allows a coach to improvise. He can vary this defense by using three players man-to-man out front with a two-man zone in back; or he can have the front play zone while the back line plays man to man.
The floor is divided in half by an imaginary line. Players 1 & 2 play man-to-man against the two guards while the three other players use a triangle zone around the basket.

Offensive player #1 has the ball, therefore the defensive player #1, assigned to him plays him tight and aggressively.

Meanwhile defensive player #2, assigned to guard offensive #2, aligns himself on the imaginary line between the ball and his defensive assignment.

At the same time, defensive players #3, #4, and #5 are in a standard triangle zone defending opponents in their area. 

 

Offensive players #1 and #2 attempted to execute a give-and-go. Defensive player #3 moved out to pick up the player with the ball while defensive player #1 stayed with his assignment.

Notice that Offensive player #2 has moved to the strong side of the court; therefore defensive player #2 is now playing him man-to-man.

Defensive player #5 is preventing an easy pass into the high post and defensive player #4 is looking to intercept a possible skip pass to offensive #4

 

Continued on Next Page

 
 
 

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Six Ways to Play Man-to-Man Defense
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[Home] [Video Reviews] [Bibliography] ( History of Coaching ) [Archived Articles] [Introduction] [Philosophy] [Picking Players] [Practice Plan] [Team Defense] [Team Offense] [2-Man Offensive] [3-Man Offensive] [Tool Box] [Attacking Man-to-Man Pressure] [ Fast Break Offense] [ Double Post Motion Offense]  [ Double-Post Zone] [Stack Offense] [The Wheel]  [Secondary Break] [Kentucky Pattern] [Man-to-Man Defense] [1-3-1 Zone] [1-2-2 Zone] [3-2 Strong-side Combination Defense] [2-3 Strong-side Combination] [Man-to-Man Press] [1-2-1-1 Zone Press] [1-3-1 Three Quarter Zone] [Multiple Defensive System] [Gym Rat Manual] [ Defense] [ Offense] [ Rebounding] [ Passing & Catching] [ Dribbling] [ Screens] [ One-on-One Moves] [ Post Player Workout ] [ Perimeter Player Workout ] [ Quick Hitter ] [ T-Cut ] [3-out 2-in wide set] [Flexing Zone] [Shooting Drills] [Jump Shot Drills] [Passing Drills] [Fast Break Drill] [Fundamental Eight] [Stations] [Indiana Weave] [Practice Planning] [Pre-season] [Early Season] [Out-of-Bounds Plays] [Balance] [Ball Handling] [Footwork] [Steps in Building] [Reading the Defense] [Driving Lay-up] [Game Strategy] [Offense against a Press] [Tips on Playing Basketball] [Box Weave] [Ken's Bookstore] [Offensive Rebounding Positions] [Defending Guards] [Tournament Play] [Choosing Defenses] [Opportunity Offense] [Attacking Zones] [Legal Notices] [Defensive Rebounding Drills] [Lay-up Drills] [Privacy Policy]
Coach Lindsay has created this website for your personal use, to further the knowledge of the fundamentals of the game of basketball. You may print and use the website's materials for your team and your personal use. Since most of this basketball site contains knowledge that Coach Lindsay has learned from others, he does not claim the knowledge as his own; however, in recognition of the work done in organizing, writing, and designing this website, the author would appreciate an acknowledgement for any of the topics reproduced. You are not permitted to reproduce any of these materials if you plan to use them in a profitable way, and may not use any of this information on your own website without permission from Ken Lindsay or his legal representative.

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