Attack the Basket off the Dribble

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How to Attack the Basket off the dribble

attack the basket off the dribble

Written By Lamar Hull @ Google+

Last week we looked at attacking the basket off the pass. This week we are going to focus on how to attack the basket off the dribble. Attacking the basket off the dribble is the most common way for any player to get to the basket. Having handles and being able to control the basketball is a sure way for you to be able to get to the basket.

I asked this question last week, again, most good players learn how to shoot, but do you spend time on your ball-handling?

I sat in a room with Coach Calipari from Kentucky and listened to him talk to my basketball team on what he looks for in potential high school recruits. The first thing he said was, he looks for players that can handle the basketball very well. At the collegiate level, basketball programs run several different defensive schemes, such as; zones, man-to-man pressure, traps, and full and half-court press. That’s why college coaches look for all-around good players, but more specifically for players who can handle the basketball. You can’t win games with too many turnovers, especially from not being able to handle the basketball. 

Attacking the basket off the dribble should be done aggressively and purposefully with technique, skill, creativity, and fundamentals. The techniques listed below are not just useful in beating defenders off the dribble, but can also help one become better at handling the ball. These moves can either be used in combination or as standalone to attack the rack. You can work on a lot of these moves during your workout time and then apply them in live action! Don’t rest between drills, keep pushing yourself! These are smaller reps…

Full-speed Between your Legs COD

  • Offensive player should start at half-court
  • Approach the defender or cone full speed (defender or cone should be at the top of the key waiting for you)
  • As you get closer the defender, bounce the basketball next to your right foot (get close enough where the defender is guarding you closely, but you still have a little space)
  • After the bounce, as the ball is coming back up to your right hand, push the basketball between your legs
  • Catch the basketball with your left hand, push the basketball out and change direction (COD) towards the basket
  • Take 1-2 dribbles and shoot a lay-up or floater
  • This has to be a quick move and you need to be good at changing direction (footwork and having control of the basketball is key)
  • Perform this drill starting with your right hand and then try it with your left hand
  • Make 5 lay-ups or floaters on the right side and 5 on the left side
  • You could also add combinations to this move once you start attacking the basket – once you take that first dribble, do an in & out crossover to the opposite side! Work on your reverse or scoop lay-up.
  • Be creative and don’t be a robot in your workout session!

Crossover Reverse Spin

  • Use the same defensive setup and starting point as the “full speed between your legs COD drill”
  • Attack the defender and crossover in a deceptive but full speed motion (it’s important to quickly change direction with your crossover)
  • Crossover at the top of the key, take one dribble to the elbow, plant your foot, and spin back towards the basket for a layup or floater
  • Use your body as a shield in your spin, spin hard and push the ball out towards the basket (your next dribble should be towards the basket)
  • Make 5 lay-ups or floaters on the right side and 5 on the left side

In & Out Hesitation

  • Continue to use the same setup as the other two drills (go full-speed and work on your COD)
  • Once you get closer to the defender, go in and out with your dribble, keep the basketball in the same hand
  • Once you get to the elbow hesitate and then attack the basket
  • Remember, add combination moves after the hesitation! Try going behind your back after the hesitation, making your layup on the opposite side of the basket.
  • Make 5 lay-ups or floaters on the right side and 5 on the left side

In & Out Crossover Between your Legs

  • Continue to use the same setup as the other drills
  • Your going to continue to work on your in and out!
  • Once you make the in and out move, quickly crossover to other hand in front of the defender
  • After you make your crossover move, take one hard dribble towards the elbow and then immediately go between your legs, changing your direction.
  • Attack the basket with one dribble and finish strong!
  • Make 5 lay-ups or floaters on the right side and 5 on the left side

Attack Retreat Attack

  • At this point, you know the setup
  • Attack the defender at the top of the key, take 2-3 slow but controlled dribbles backwards (keep the ball in the same hand, create space as you back up)
  • As soon as you get to that 2nd or 3rd retreat dribble, stun the defender by attacking the basket full speed again (you will have to read the defender’s reaction, if he comes up on the second dribble attack him, if he steps closer on the 3rd dribble, that’s when you need to attack)
  • Make the defender think you are setting up a play and then explode past him or her
  • On the retreat, stay low and control the basketball because if you are not careful, the defender can attack the dribble and catch you off guard while you are in retreat mode.
  • Make 5 lay-ups or floaters on the right side and 5 on the left side


I hope this was helpful for you and will make you a better ball-handler so that you can get to the rack by attacking off the dribble. As a reminder, dribble the basketball with force, quickness and control. Try to refrain from dribbling too much! Make one or two moves on the defense and then attack the basket with 1-2 dribbles. In the midst of that, use some combination moves if you are cut off to change direction. I’m looking forward to hearing from a lot of you go-getters who are using these drills and are improving your ball-handling and attack to the basket!


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3 Responses to “Attack the Basket off the Dribble”

  1. Hammad

    Nice trick.. Commend me.

  2. Harga Hp iPhone

    great basketball tricks that you distributed for free, very useful for me


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