Blog Archives

Creating an Offensive Play Call System (Part 3)

In case you missed Part 1 (Offensive Schemes) and Part 2 (Pick & Rolls Names), make sure you read them after you them as complimentary material to the information below.

Post Actions

When it comes time to put in my post plays, I tag the term “Power” to the end of each play call. In my mind, Power signifies strength and dominance, which I what I hope to create in the post with such actions. Another term commonly used in the NBA that you may prefer is the word “Punch”. For example, “Floppy Punch” is an easy way to call out for your big(s) to duck-in after running your Floppy action. Below are a few of my favorite “Power” (Punch) actions and for the full list check them out in my play library here.



Flare & Backscreen Actions

The last pay calls I am going to discuss are flare screens and backscreen actions. I have grouped these together because they are similar in nature go somewhat hand-in-hand.  I used to tag Flare & Backscreen actions with the same term, “Back”. However, after listening to Coach Stan Van Gundy’s lecture at the 2013 Coaching U Live it is time to make a change. He tags all of his Flare actions with the term, “Chest”. I love using Chest because it not only is it a clear term but is also a teaching moment. Chest, signifying putting the defender you are screening in the middle of your chest with the screen. This will also allow for more consistency with “Back” only meaning actions being back-screened to the rim.



I really hope you found this three-part series information and thought-provoking. If there are any topics you would like for me to right about in the future please do not hesitate to reach out to me.

Creating an Offensive Play Call System (Part 1)

One question I am frequently asked, “How do I come up with the play calls that I use for my plays?”. Until now, I have never taken the time to explain why I name certain actions the way I do. This was until I watched Stan Van Gundy’s lecture at the 2013 Coaching U Live and I became inspired to break it all down for you. However, before I dive into the names of particular actions to signal play calls, let’s discuss many of the most commonly run schemes in basketball.

Flex Action

Flex is probably the most known and run offenses in all of basketball. Why? Because it is extremely effective if not guarded correctly. Furthermore, it is a repetitive offense that if you can lull the defense to sleep, will result in lay-ups. Flex actions are designated by running a backscreen/downscreen action. If you want to be creative you can move your wings higher and set traditional backscreens to give more space/time to get open at the rim.


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Play Overload? Here is why…

It has been chronicled that Hall of Fame coach Jerry Sloan only ran 8 plays during his 23 year tenure with the Utah Jazz. For Sloan, it was not about the number of plays in the playbook, but rather the execution of those plays. If you are able to teach your players to run 8 plays to perfection, including the reads and options to counter the defense, you will not only win more games but your players will also learn more about how to play the game.

This brings me to the reason for today’s article. Words on the Bounce is comprised of hundreds of basketball plays from coaches at all different levels. Do I expect you as the reader to like every single play and add it to your playbook? No. My goal of Words on the Bounce is to provide effective plays that you might be interested in and inevitably help you win more games. If I am able to give you one play from my entire collection that helps you succeed, I have achieved that goal. Whether it be an out-of-bounds play or an end of game situation, Words on the Bounce is here to help you win games and build successful basketball programs.

If I can ever help you in your coaching career in anyway, please do not hesitate to let me know.

Chicago Bulls : Diamond Flare (End of Game)

While you’re here make sure you check out the 2013 version of Championship Execution! Click on the link to the right to learn more!!

At the end of regulation of Game 4 versus the Brooklyn Nets, Chicago Bulls head coach Tom Thibodeau drew up this play to force overtime. The play did not directly lead to a score but did put Joakim Noah into position for the tip-in.

Diamond Flare

San Antonio Spurs : Horns Twist

Going deep into their bench last night, the San Antonio Spurs ran this Horns pick and and re-pick versus the Golden State Warriors.

Horns Twist

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