The Warriors ran this action after a timeout when they needed a basket. They start in a 4-high look with Steph Curry & Draymond Green stacked at the free throw line. Green sets a screen for Curry to execute a mini-Iverson cut to the wing. Durant clears to the opposite corner. After Thompson enters the ball to Curry he receives a back screen from Green, who then pops to the ball after his screen. Curry “chases” his pass & doesn’t get it, but the action doesn’t stop as Green now dribbles at Thompson who sets up a backdoor perfectly & ends up w/ a dunk.
A few things stood out to me on this set (there were a ton, butt these are the main ones).
1.) Pace. Every cut was to score. Even if the initial actions were misdirections or decoys to get to the primary action of the Green-Thompson backdoor, they had the defense honoring each cut because of the pace (and the scoring ability of the players).
2.) Timing. Players executed their movements w/ pace, but also w/ precision & coordination. Watch the footwork again on each cut.
3.) Flow. There were no stoppages in the action. The play moved from one action to the next seamlessly.
Everyone has offensive sets that are effective on paper, but great offensive action is more than diagrams. If your actions don’t have fundamentals such as pace, space, timing, precision, and flow, it doesn’t matter what they look like on paper- they will not be effective. As the season approaches for many high school and youth coaches, it’s natural to want to implement a series of sets that can get your team easy looks at the basket, however, what may be more effective is to focus less on the number of sets you have, and instead emphasize the quality of the action!