The great Pete Newell taught that the coach's primary responsibility is helping players "see the game." We teach CARE, an acronym for concentrate, anticipate, react, and execute.
It's not perfect. Will Smith helped out with that, yesterday. I discussed a few points about setting screens...with the followup on coming off them today. I only made a few points, saying nothing about drag screens in transition, angles, defending screens, the many types of screens, et cetera.
Equally important is the player receiving the screen. She may or may not have 'called for' the screen, but she must work to create separation.
- Read the screen. If she has the ball, she must be able to go DOWNHILL and assess the defensive reaction. Will she drive, shoot if the defense goes under, split if a hedger overcommits, and can she make the passes on the roll, slip, or pop?
- If she's receiving an off-the ball screen, if the defender trails, will she curl. If the defender is too aggressive, will she back cut, and when the defender gets tied up, can she 'bump', catch, and score?
- The recipient must set up the cut.
- "It's better to be too late than too early." So often we see players anxious to come off the screen who don't allow it to be set properly. Each time we allow this to happen in practice (I'm guilty, too), we encourage bad habits.
- "Wait, wait, wait." Don Meyer told players to tell themselves this to encourage patience.
A few of Coach Wooden's core values show up in the screen game.
- Be true to yourself.
- Help others (reminder: the screener is the second cutter)
- Make each day your masterpiece.
Bonus: I teach players coming off the screen to grab your teammate (gently) and turn her into the play (guarantees correct rolling). Will Smith can help us on that one, too!
What is the best two minutes in sports...not the Kentucky Derby.