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Individual Defense Drills


1-on-1 Push-Step

  • Player A begins dribbling in a zig-zag fashion as player B practices his push-step technique.

  • Player B must stay in his stance with his arms locked behind his back.

  • Switch places on the return trip.


3-Man Defensive Drill

  • This live 3-man defensive drill allows for three consecutive turns on defense per player.

  • Player A begins the drill with the ball on the wing. Player B starts out in the post guarded by player C. Player A passes the ball into player B. Player C attempts to keep player B from scoring.

  • Player A rotates to closest elbow, while player C rebounds player B’s made or missed shot. Player C tosses the ball to player A, closes-out and player A and C go 1-on-1.

  • Player B positions himself on the wing. Player C rebounds player A’s made or missed shot and tosses the ball to player B. Player C closes-out and player B and C go 1-on-1.


Knight Slide Drill

  • Team A lines up underneath the basket right at the equator.

  • Player A begins the drill facing the sideline. He push-steps to the halfcourt circle (“South to North”).

  • Meanwhile, player B starts as soon as player A gets as far as the freethrow line.

  • He then retreat steps and push-steps to the sideline (FT line extended).

  • Again, player A retreat steps and now slides “West to East”.

  • Talk is essential as players will now be crossing at the freethrow line and equator junction.

  • Slide across to the opposite sideline and finish with three push-ups. Repeat sequence with added quickness.

Partner Ball Roll

  • Defender A starts on the right freethrow elbow. Player B and C stand on the baseline, as wide as the lane and each with a ball.

  • Player B rolls the ball up the lane to the opposite elbow, defender A push-steps across the lane, picks up the ball and flick passes it back to player B.

  • Player C does the same. Repeat this sequence ten times or according to time.



  • Player A positions himself on the block, facing the baseline, keeping both feet out of the paint. He passes the ball up off the glass to the opposite side.

  • He must then “push-step” to the other side and rebound the ball on the other side of the lane.

  • Repeat ten times or according to time.


Great ball pressure is the result of “hot feet”, active hands (arm’s length, 6” zone) and talk (call the ball); but don’t foul. Fouling negates hustle!

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