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Crossover Dribble and Shot
Crossover Dribble and Shot

The cross-over dribble has become a staple for all great perimeter scorers. These great scorers make it look easy, but see how much goes into this important shot.

Shot Off a Screen
Shot Off a Screen

The screen when set effectively will always create some problems in a defense. This will allow a brief opportunity to take an open shot. See how we do it in this video.

Pull Up Jump Shot
Pull Up Jump Shot

Often the best shot a basketball player will get is before the opposing team's defense can set up. Watch this video to see everything that goes into this shot.

Shooting the Runner
Shooting the Runner

The runner in the lane can be a great way for a smaller player to attack the basket. See how it's done in this video.

One Dribble Control Drill
One Dribble Control Drill

When taking a shot off the dribble that final dribble into the shot pocket will be the most important. Watch in this video an excellent drill to work on this.

Advanced Shooting Tips

Variety of ways to make the Reverse Layup

Around the basket can become rather congested and it may take some creativity to put the shot past tall defenders. Their are a variety of ways to make the reverse layup, and this video shows a variety of ways to use the backboard to get shots off near the basket.


Add a Reverse Layup to the Around-the-Basket Repertoire

Reverse layups have a lot of different purposes but the main one is to not get blocked by people who are taller or may be more athletic. You’re basically using the rim as a way to keep big guys from blocking your shot. Shot blockers, even the best ones really are anticipating where the shot is coming from when it goes toward the basket. They see the angle that the shooter is taking and anticipate where he wants to take the shot from. If you have several different places from which you will launch the ball from on your layup it will be harder to anticipate.

Another trick that you want to know how to do is to put the basketball high off the glass. The best way to practice this drill is by going back and forth and doing reverse layups on both sides. This is basically an extension of the old “George Mikan drill”. If you’re going on the right side you want to make sure that you’re using the same footwork as you would for right-handed layup and on the left side the same for a left-hand layup. You also want to be able to jump as high as you can just to give the ball a shorter distance to travel.

When you take this shot make sure that you use the backboard because it gives you a little bit of leeway in case you go a little off target.

Shooting the Basketball Bank Shot

Using the backboard when shooting the basketball is a lost art, but understanding how you should be shooting the basketball bank shot will definitely increase your shooting percentages from certain parts of the floor. Check out this video to see how it’s done.


The Lost Art- The Basketball Bank Shot

A lost art in the game of basketball is using the backboard on a jump shot. Most people might think of using the backboard as a shot following a post move, and it’s great for that. But it can also be used by guards when they are taking tough shots in the mid-range. Most good bank shooters like to take this shot within 10 to 15 feet and close to a 45° angle and you just want to shoot it like a regular jump shot.

It’s good to put a little bit of arc on the basketball because you just want to gently knock it off the board where it has the best chance to go in. If you shoot it too hard it is likely to ricochet wildly off the other side. You will hear some old-time basketball people call it the “kiss” off the glass. That will give you an idea of how softly the ball should be shot.

There is no real trick or secret to making bank shots other than it just takes a lot of practice and repetition. But if you dedicate the time to it this shot can pay huge dividends in games, because by becoming proficient with the bank shot your shooting percentages from certain areas on the floor will increase dramatically.

Shimmy Move to Freeze Your Defender in Basketball

Often just a small move will give you space to shoot your jump shot. This move, called the shimmy, is designed to freeze your defender for just an instant. The shimmy move to freeze your defender in basketball will allow you a bit of room, and if you have a quick release on your jump shot that’s all you need.


The Shimmy Move- Subtle but Effective

This move is basically a hesitation move with some flare. As you’re dribbling you want to hesitate by slowing down and making your defender think you’re going to put a move on him. As you are hesitating slightly rock your shoulders back and forth to give the impression that you might cross over but instead simply pull up for the jump shot. The key to this move is using your shoulders and your upper body to make the defender hesitates for a second. You just want to keep your defender off-balance enough for you to get clear for your jump shot.

What’s difficult about this move is that it is so quick and so subtle that maybe the casual observer will never even see you do it. What’s important is that the defender sees you doing it and any subtle move that you do with your shoulders, your chest or your feet will be seen and reacted to. Remember, the game as you advance becomes very quick, so that defender knows he has to react quickly to any movement that you should make. You’re just giving that defender a slight move and let them react to it.

So again make sure that you are practicing this move on your own but also trying it against other people. Experiment with it to see just how much shoulder shake to use. A good person to watch use this move is Kevin Durant.

Side-step Move for the Jump Shot

The side-step move for the jump shot is great for creating space to get your shot off. By getting your defender a little on his heals you can set him up to go in multiple directions, making your one-on-one jump shot hard to block.  See how easy it is to put this move into your repertoire.


A Simple Side-Step will give You Just enough Space

This is a move I have watched Paul Pierce do against my favorite team numerous times. The way you’ll pull off this move is to look like you’re driving to the basket initially. For this move I’m only using one or two dribbles. You’re going to push with your inside foot off to the side and rise up for jump shot. This move works best if you’re pushing in the direction of your shooting hand.

The reason being is because your defender will be on your weak side and by a just pushing off to the side a little bit you’re creating more than enough room to get off a shot. This is also forcing the defender to make a hard contest of the shot, and the only way they would be able to block it would be to foul you.

It’s also a good idea to keep your dribble alive as long as you can because you can use the side step as a distraction to get your defender out of position to drive by him for an easier shot. Paul Pierce uses this best in the mid-range and when you’re practicing it, make sure you’re exploding off your inside foot to get as much separation as possible.

Step-back for the Basketball Jump Shot

Using the step-back is one more way to free yourself in basketball to get your jump shot off. As with all the best moves in basketball the step-back for the basketball jump shot allows footwork to get you free rather than using the dribble. Check out how it’s done.



The Step-back Is not a Fall-away Jump Shot

The step back is a move that everybody should know how to do properly. A step back is not to be mistaken with the fade away. To properly do a step back you want to look like you’re driving to the basket so the defender will guard you low with his hands toward the ground. After you convince them that you’re driving on them you want to take your inside foot and push backwards. Drop back a couple of feet, rise up for the jump shot, straight up and straight down.

If you do this properly the defender will have no chance to contest your shot, but first you have to sell that defender on the fact that you’re going to drive. The step back also sets up other things as well. If you do a step back the defender will try to come out and contest your shot which leaves them off balance, and you can keep your dribble alive and take it by them. Just remember that the farther out you go the more difficult a step back is.

You have to make sure that you’re low on the dribble while on the step back and low going into the shot to get enough power to get the shot to the basket without forcing it. So make sure that you take these shots well within your range. Also, this is a shot that demands a lot of practice.

Reverse Pivot for the Basketball Jump Shot

This video shows how to free yourself from a defender who is playing overly-aggressive defense on the outside. The reverse pivot for the basketball jump shot is not used by a lot of players, but can be a valuable tool. It is an example of what Coach Justin teaches: use footwork to make a play rather than relying on the dribble.

The Reverse Pivot can Free You from Defensive Pressure

The reverse pivot move is something I’ve done since I was a very young player. Most people that turn their backs to the defender do so when they are crowded and they’re scared that the defender will take the ball. I use this to my advantage by letting the defender think I’m turning to avoid the pressure when they crowd me. When they get out of defensive position and try to steal the ball I will use a reverse pivot to seal them off. From there I explode for either jump shot or to the basket.

This move works especially well when you are up against aggressive defenders. These guys will try to body you up to make you turn the ball over or get scared and make a bad decision. Use this move to show them that they have made the bad decision. Even when you’re double-team it’s no reason to panic, because often they will leave the back door opened for the reverse pivot (watch how I did it in the video). Just remember to check out that no defender is in the area your reversing to.

A reverse pivot can also be used as a safety if you get stopped on a drive. Let’s say I’m driving with my right hand to the basket and I see help side come over. I use a reverse pivot away from my defender to get the ball back out and set up another play. This is just one more example of how footwork can get you open instead of just relying on speed.

Jump-Stop for Shooting the Basketball

This video shows another footwork move to quickly get in balance when taking a jump shot that is called the jump-stop for shooting the basketball.  The video clip also shows the up-fake and counter move that will make this much more difficult to defend.  It is all part of the package of moves that can get a player open consistently, provided they know the right footwork.


The Jump-Stop can be a Valuable Offensive Tool

The jump stop is one of the best ways to get the shot quickly, but it’s also an excellent weapon because it also gives you other options depending on what the defense does. As the ball is coming to you want to catch it at the same time that you’re landing on the floor in a jump stop. Be sure you have your feet pointed toward the basket, so all you have to do is catch the ball, rise up and take the shot.

If you’re being well-guarded when you use a jump stop you can use either foot as your pivot foot. This allows you to go in any direction, allowing yourself more options such as driving to the basket or passing to a teammate. And in terms of shooting it is by far the quickest way to get off your jump shot. This makes it extremely useful for getting shots up over defenders more quickly before they can close out on you.

When you’re practicing this you want to make sure that you’re not jumping to your highest point. The jump stop, also called the hop, is simply a quick little move to get your feet lined up to the basket, and then everything else with your shot stays exactly the same.

One-Two Step into the Jump Shot

To get into the proper shooting position footwork is vital.  There are different ways to get yourself into perfect shooting form, but it must be done quickly and foot position has to be perfect.  This video demonstrates the one-two step into the jump shot that all basketball shooters must do without ever thinking about it.



Setting Up the Jump Shot with the One-Two Step

The one-two step is the basic footwork you need when you’re running toward the ball off a screen or stepping into a shot in transition. This is footwork that every shooter needs to perfect, and it has numerous uses. The basic principles are you always want to step with the foot that is closest to the basket. For example if I was running from the right wing towards the middle my right foot would be the closest to the basket.

As I show in the above video, take one step with the right first then followed by the left. Next I square my shoulders to the basket and shoot. If I were coming from the other side things would just be the complete opposite. First I would step with my left followed by my right, square my shoulders and shoot. It’s very important practice going both ways so you don’t have any weakness in being able to get your shot off. When opponents know you can go only one way or the other they will force you to go to your weakest side in games, and all good teams quickly know how to exploit your weaknesses.

Not only do you want to practice coming from either direction, but you also want to work coming from different angles rather than straight on from the wing. You just never know in game situations where your shots are going to come from, but you always want to be completely confident in your footwork so you never even have to think about it.

Europe vs USA Basketball
Europe vs USA Basketball

In this eBook Europe vs America- Differences in how a Basketball Game is Played, Coach Justin Rake describes some of these differences, and then demonstrates with videos how teams like the San Antonio Spurs are making this part of their attack.

Basketball Shooting off the Dribble
Basketball Shooting off the Dribble

All great scorers have to be able to shoot off the dribble. Here's how.

Moving Without the Basketball
Moving Without the Basketball

Before every shooter gets to pull the trigger on his deadly shot he has to get open. This book demonstrates how.

Basketball Advanced Shooting
Basketball Advanced Shooting

Basketball Advanced Shooting builds off the previous book of Basketball Shooting Fundamentals to demonstrate ways to create space for the shot.

Basketball Shooting Fundamentals
Basketball Shooting Fundamentals

This book discusses basics for a picture-perfect jump shot. These basic concepts are supported visually with links to videos.

What Young Basketball Players Need to Know
What Young Basketball Players Need to Know

This book is a primer for young basketball players and their parents on what they need to do to become successful in the game of basketball.