Blog

Why I Choose to Fully Commit to Motion Offense and Man-to-Man Defense

by Paul Cortes Head Boys Varsity Coach, International High School Director of Player and Coach Development, Bay City Basketball At the ages of 14 and under, which is what is widely classified as “youth basketball”, I do not believe in set plays and zone defenses. Here’s why: It is my conviction that basketball is, first Read more about Why I Choose to Fully Commit to Motion Offense and Man-to-Man Defense[…]

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!  […]

Are the Rockets the Anti-SABA?

When I wrote SABA: The Antifragile Offense, the San Antonio Spurs were the model; they moved the ball, cut and exploited small openings or advantages, continually hunting for a better shot. They used some of the same ideas: you’re most open on the catch, 1-second rule (they call it a .5 second rule), etc. Because Read more about Are the Rockets the Anti-SABA?[…]

How much is too much

Originally published in Hard2Guard Player Development Newsletter, 7.22 (July 2017). Buy Volume 7 as a paperback or a Kindle. 

A few weeks ago, I watched a high-school player practice and listened to her coach and parents discuss her progress and training. Their discussion caused me to fear for the player. Unfortunately, her story is becoming increasingly common.  […]

Coach Education, Coaching Clinics, and Development

Every so often, a Twitter storm erupts about the need for mandatory coach education. There is a belief that coach education will solve every ill in basketball in the U.S. U.S. Soccer requires coaching licenses at various levels, including the Development Academy. Their coach education programs are further along than USA Basketball’s, but every complaint Read more about Coach Education, Coaching Clinics, and Development[…]

Developing a Successful High School Program

Originally published in Hard2Guard Player Development Newsletter, Volume 7. Subscribe here.

As I think about the realities of youth sports today, the most important person in the development of a successful high-school athletic program may be the elementary school physical education teacher. We know athletes specialize. We know athletes engage in less free or unstructured play. That does not appear likely to change. We also know this specialization has adverse effects in terms of basic movement competency, general physical literacy, overuse injuries, and emotional burnout. […]

Steve Kerr and players running the show

Originally published in Hard2Guard Player Development Newsletter, 8.3. Subscribe here.  Steve Kerr allowed Warrior players to run the huddles during their game against Phoenix last night. His decision has inspired praise from those who view it as empowering players and derision from those who view it as disrespecting an opponent or evidence that the Warriors Read more about Steve Kerr and players running the show[…]