Sunday, January 22, 2012

Yet Another Great Last Second Play

Was watching Onalaska (WI) vs. St. Paul Johnson at the East  Metro Show case this weekend in St. Paul. Most of the games were blowouts, but the one good game was the Onalaska vs. Johnson matchup. It was back and fourth all game with the outcome undecided until the final seconds. With the game tied and 12 seconds left on the clock, Coach Kowal reached into his bag of tricks and pulled out this gem.

The play starts with the ball in the slot, a player on the block, a stack on the backside block, and your stud in the corner. In this case the stud was Onalaksa's Matt Thomas who's a nationally rated recruit and had 30 points in the game.
As the play starts the guard dribbles across to the other slot spot. As he does the stud (2) comes across off the first screen and then sneaks through the elevator screen using the stacked players on the opposite block. As this happens, the player who set the first screen on the ballside block cuts up hard to the slot on his side. The dribbler turns pass fakes to the popper, who cuts backdoor for a layup.

This is a masterful misdirection play. They do a great job of making it look like they are selling out to get their stud the last shot no matter what. The opponents are already focusing on the stud, and simply setting up this play makes it look like they are going to get him the ball at all costs. This increases the focus of the defense on the stud. In the game you could definately see that 3s defender was surprised that he even moved, being a step behind the pop up makes the defender over commit harder to try to get the pass. It set the backcut up perfectly and ended up with a layup.

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