The problem with stutter steps 

Originally published in Hard2Guard Player Development Newsletter, 8.15. Subscribe here.

I attended a college practice, and the team practiced closeouts. Fake Fundamentals explains my philosophy on the traditional closeout. This drill mixed short and long closeouts depending on one’s starting position, and the staff treated them the same. Players ran a few steps and stutter-stepped to close the distance to one arm’s length from the attacker. Because it was a  non-competitive shell drill, nobody gave up an open shot or was beaten on the drive. The closeouts worked!  […]

How to play defense: No Fake Fundamentals

My friend and future NBA coach Jon Giesbrecht put together the above video on Oklahoma City’s Andre Roberson’s defense. Many consider Roberson to be the NBA’s best perimeter defender, especially with Kawhi Leonard’s persistent injury problems this season. As I watched the video, I noticed two things. More specifically, I noticed the absence of two Read more about How to play defense: No Fake Fundamentals[…]

Lateral movement, basketball defense, and persistent myths

Last week, I attended a high-school varsity girls basketball game between good teams with college-bound players, and it was evident that the players had been taught never to cross their feet on defense. When I lamented this instruction via Twitter, several people questioned my lamentations. These questions spurred a few videos this week on defense, lateral movement, and the crossover step. For more information, check out Fake Fundamentals. […]

Defensive Footwork Drills

Few things frustrate me more than watching poor teaching techniques perpetuated because coaches fail to examine their methods critically and instead teach the same “basketball truth” over and over regardless of the efficacy of the skill or the teaching. Static stretching is the biggest culprit, as many coaches refuse to adjust their coaching despite paper Read more about Defensive Footwork Drills[…]

Crossover Step, Agility & Defense

The video below demonstrates the difference in speed in driving off your lead leg with a crossover step as opposed to stepping with your lead leg first. In the example, the athlete is faster using a crossover step than he is turning to sprint. This is not a perfect example to the difference between a Read more about Crossover Step, Agility & Defense[…]

Defensive Footwork: The Mirror Drill

I write about (and use) the Mirror Defensive Drill frequently. Here is Michael Reid using one form of the Mirror Drill with his Swedish team. Rather than have players stand in line, to end the drill, I toss the ball toward the other end for the players to chase; whoever gets the ball is on Read more about Defensive Footwork: The Mirror Drill[…]

The High Set for Lateral Movement

As I have written previously, tennis movement and basketball movement are similar. A physical therapist sent me this video which examines the “high set” position and the Harvard University tennis team. Now, basketball differs from tennis because of the presence of fakes and other aspects, so there is not a linear argument from tennis footwork Read more about The High Set for Lateral Movement[…]

Lateral Movement Training for Basketball

Hard2Guard Player Development Newsletter 4.12 featured an interview with Stanford University’s men’s basketball strength & conditioning coach Keith D’Amelio. In the interview, he covers some drills that he uses to train lateral movement. Here are the videos: 1-2 Stick 1-2 Cut & Stick 1-2 Cut Continuous Originally published in Hard2Guard Player Development Newsletter, Volume 4. For Read more about Lateral Movement Training for Basketball[…]