One of my favorite college basketball blogs is a site called The Mikan Drill, a site that looks at the Xs and Os of the college game. Something that they have been over there since the season has ended was Season Leftovers, looking at some great sets over the course of the college season. An idea so good, that I decided to bring it over here during the NBA offseason.
We are now entering the third round of posts looking at my favorite sets from this past season, so we are back at the beginning, looking at two more baseline out of bounds sets (click for part 1 and part 2).
Lakers Get a Baseline Bucket
On this particular set, the Lakers were able to use both of their bigs to get an open look along the baseline.
As soon as the trigger man (Matt Barnes) gets the basketball, Shannon Brown comes off of a double screen set by both Pau Gasol and Andrew Bynum.
After running off of Bynum’s screen, Brown heads towards the corner, taking his man with him. After setting his screen for Brown, Bynum comes over and sets another screen, this time for Pau Gasol.
This was a great screen by Bynum, knocking Dirk Nowitzki off balance. This forces Brendan Haywood to step up and defend Gasol as the basketball heads towards him. With nobody covering him, this allows Bynum to roll to the rim.
As Gasol makes the catch, Bynum is wide open in the paint with Haywood stepping up towards to him. As soon as Gasol gets possession of the basketball, he throws a great touch pass to Bynum.
Bynum makes the catch, quickly takes the ball up, and finish with the open dunk easily. Here is the play in real time:
Just a great set here by the Lakers, taking advantage of both bigs’ strengths. First, the Lakers are using Bynum’s size and strength to set powerful screens, first for Brown and then for Gasol. Meanwhile, we see Gasol’s ability to move without the basketball and throw the perfect touch pass. Great design.
Bulls Get Derrick Rose an Easy Shot
To get a guy like Derrick Rose open along the baseline, it takes more than a solid set. With so much attention focused on him, it takes a nice set combined with a defensive mistake or two. The Bulls need to run a nice set, but in this particular instance, the Clippers had to make a mistake as well.
You don’t often see teams getting quick baskets from baseline out of bounds sets, mainly because the defense usually has all of their guys between the the inbounder and the basket, preventing any easy looks. So for the Bulls to get an easy look for Derrick Rose, two things had to happen. First, the Bulls had to run a nice set, and second, the Clippers had to make a defensive error. That is what happened here:
The play starts with Carlos Boozer curling from the top of the key and flashing to the basketball. Kurt Thomas is going to get in position to set a screen for Derrick Rose, who flashes towards the rim.
Now, this is a nice little set, but the only way the Bulls are going to score is if the Clippers make a mistake. That mistake comes from Blake Griffin. Griffin is protecting the paint as his man sets a screen. He is in perfect position to help on Rose flashing to the basket.
Instead, Griffin follows Thomas as he clears out of the lane. So when Derrick Rose makes the catch, he has the entire rim area empty for him to go to work.
Griffin tries to recover, but it is too late and he picks up a foul while letting Rose get the bucket. Here is the play in real time:
The reason why this play worked is because Blake Griffin got tunnel vision and just focused on his man, Kurt Thomas. He didn’t see the Bulls’ nice play develop, and that is what lead to the basket.