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 Offensive Basketball Plays: Motion Offense

The following offensive basketball plays all utilize a motion offense, designed to create confusion for the defense and get open looks for your players.


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There are a few plays on this page, so please scroll down to read all the way through. Each play is accompanied with pictures and descriptions.

In the diagrams, the dotted line shows the direction the ball travels, while solid lines represent movement of the players...


Offensive Basketball Play #1: ARROW


As 1 moves from right to left the even 2 and 4 side moves up toward the ball.


3 Moves down into the lane to set a screen for 4. If it is a zone then pick the man in the elbow. Immediately after the screen cut down and through lane. Hurry up because 1 will be cutting behind you.

Option A: The pass goes to 4. 1 Cuts between his man and the ball for a give and go. When you reach the basket cut to your right to set a screen for 3.


5: As 1 makes his move down the lane, you should pop out and, if they are playing a man to man, your defender will follow opening up the lane for 1.

4: If you are being double teamed on closely guarded you can break down the lane after 1 or pass to 5. But this is not the first choice.

The first choice is 5 coming back to the mid Block and receiving a pass.


1 cuts out of lane and picks for 3.

3: You MUST CUT LOW, under and away from the middle of the lane to the corner.


You'll do a curl up the 3-point arch in case 5 needs to pass the ball outside.

4 needs to fake a cut toward the middle of the lane and back out to the point on the triangle. At this point 5 has either taken a shot or passed it back out.


If you can stall and go into a Triple Threat position amazing things are about to happen. 1 and 2 will pick for each other. 2 will do a back door taking the pick from 1 and running behind the defense. 1 pops up to the foul line.

If none of this works. Kick it back out to 1 to reload the offense.



Offensive Basketball Play #2: BULLETS MOTION 5


This is a five-man screen and move offense against a man to man defense. The main idea is to screen away from the pass and move to the ball. The players closest to the ball will set screens away from the ball. The players who get the screen will move to the ball. The basic positions are the point, wings, and low posts or short corners. When the ball is dribbled instead of passed the basic screen away movement is initiated.


2 and 3 screen down for 4 and 5. 4 and 5 basket curl. 2 and 3 pop out to the wings.

1 passes to 2. 1 screens away for 3. 3 moves to the point.


Note: Whenever a player is coming to the ball at the top, he will cut to the decision point at the free throw line. If the defense is playing below or even with the cutter he will pop out high. If the defense is playing above or denying the pass he will basket cut.


4 screens across the lane for 5. 4 moves across the lane to the low post or short corner.

2 passes to 3. 5 back screens for 2.


Note: On each pass from the wing to the point the player on the ball side low post will back screen for the passer.


1 screens down for 4. 4 will basket curl. We always want 4 and 5 to basket curl when they get a downscreen.

3 should look inside to check all passing options.

Begin the reverse action...



Offensive Basketball Play #3: 3 OUT 2 IN MOTION

Whenever the ball is passed on the wing the strong side post player goes to the elbow.

5 can receive the ball or cut to the weak side elbow. 1 sets a down screen (and rolls to the basket) for 3 who goes to the top or back cuts to the basket. If 3 cuts to the basket then 1 rolls & goes back to the top.

5 drops down for the second cutter to the basket. If there is no pass to 5, 4 passes back out to 3, then goes & sets a screen for 5. We are now back in our original 3 out 2 in.



3 can now pass to 5.



Offensive Basketball Play #4: F-VILLE MOTION

Set up with two low posts and two wings.


Then the point guard passes to either wing.

The wing with the ball looks to pass to the player in the post.


While that is happening the point after passing has turned and set a pick for the opposite wing.

The wing without the ball runs off the screen to replace the point and cover saftey.

If the pass can't go inside the wing waves the post away. The post then rolls and sets a screen for the opposite post.


The wing now has two options: 1) Pass the ball back to the point guard, who then passes to the other wing player. The wing player is then looking to get the pass into the post player after he has screened.

Option 2) Hold the ball and wait for the player to come of the screen.

If the pass can't be made the ball is then passed to the point and the play is reset.


The essence of this play is that the passes/ball rotation needs to be quick and the screens need to be set & used well.


Offensive Basketball Play #5: INDIANA


Man to Man Motion Offense (Will also work on a 3-2 Zone Defense [Find gaps in zone and go there])


1 is the Point Guard, 2 is the Off Guard, 3 is the Small Forward, 4 is the Power Forward, 5 is the Center.


1 decides which side of the floor to go to and then 4 and 5 go and set picks for 2 and 3.

Option 1:


1 Passes to 2 for a jump shot.

Option 2:


If 2 is not open for a jump shot he looks low to 4 for a post up.

Option 3:


After 1 passes to 2 he sets a cross screen for 3 who cuts across the free throw lane looking for a jump shot. After setting the screen 1 rolls back out as a defensive safety for the fast break.

Option 4:


3 Drives to the basket for a lay up. 4 & 5 are in good rebounding position.

Option 5:


3 looks for 4 & 5 opening up to the ball.

Reset the offense and start again.



Offensive Basketball Play #6: INSIDE MOTION


All players fill the spots as indicated. This may be used as transition. 1 may pass to wing and cut for lay up if this happens 1 becomes the post player and 5 is the point. This offense allows all players to play inside and on the outside so it dose not matter who starts in what spot as long as all are filled.

1 pass to 2 and set a down screen for 4 4 cuts high looks for the ball and then looks at the options available . 1 will exchange with 5 looking for inside seals


1 may dribble entry 2 will then down screen for 4 and it runs as normal


This offense is designed to allow players to read the defense and make decisions

On ball reversal [pass to point] Inside players will back screen for wing players...

4 passes to 5 and screens away. Wing players must look to feed the post players.


NOTES This offense works well against both zone and man to man. Against a zone the post cutter must stop at the foul line.

If the post recives the ball the screener will re-screen so we get a cut down the middle for a lay up.



Offensive Basketball Play #7: MOTION RECEIVERS



There are many principles in regards to running a motion offense, some are: - to score - ball reversal - get inside the key (via dribble or pass) - receivers - reading the defense MOVEMENT + PATIENCE = BASKETS MOVEMENT WITH A PURPOSE


With any penertraion the receivers spots must be filled.


They are shown above with the "X", in addition to this we must always have an offensive man spot up opposite and a defensive safety.



Setup 1.


If you are below the # spot of the key you must always get to a receiver spot unless you are on the same side as a player posting up.


#3 dribble penetrates into the key, #5 steps into one receiver spot while #2 steps into another.


#1 repositions as the defensive safety while #4 is spotting up opposite.

Setup 2.


#1 has dribble penetration form the point.


#5 and #3 fill in the receiver spots (low) while #2 moves into the spot up opposite position and #4 becomes the defensive safety.


#4 while having a long way to run to fill their spot will ensure that the floor remains balanced.


Plus the rule of do not fill a receiver sport if you are on the side that their is a post position filled.

Setup 3:


#3 has penetration at the elbow.


#5 and #4 step into the receiver spots.


#2 takes up the position to spot up opposite.


While # 1 will fill in as the defensive safety.



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