Drilling Players to Drive North and South

Yesterday I wrote about how Merrimack develops pivot footwork on the perimeter. As four players were developing the deliberate pivot work, a separate group was incorporating the same footwork with a greater focus on finishing. For almost the entire duration of the five-minute station, players were pivoting on their left foot and driving to their left hand. Players finished off of two feet and off of one foot. Merrimack coaches then made an adjustment for one player which I really liked to get her to drive north and south instead of east and west.

Keep Players Going North and South

To add a degree of difficulty and simulate game conditions the coach sat as a rim protector with a football pad underneath the rim. When one player was drifting too far to the wing on a drive from the top, a second coach acted as a help defender. The new layer to the drill forced the player to dribble more north instead of northwest.

Merrimack only utilized the second coach for one player, but at lower levels of basketball this is a tactic that is more applicable. If a second coach is not available a chair or a player would serve the same purpose. The primary goal of it is to ensure that players attack the rim instead of fading away. Players too often give up the advantage the first step will generate after a good shot fake or a reversal and settle for getting northwest or northeast instead of north. The shot is probably less likely to get blocked if they get through the wing help defender, but they also are less likely to get fouled.

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