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Coach Steve Pavlovic's Ezine Archives

"Proven tips for  youth basketball coaches"

  

 

 

         

 Select an issue from the list below: 

                      

               January 2004     February 2004       March 2004

                     April 2004     May 2004                 June 2004

                     July 2004      August 2004           September 2004

              October 2004     November 2004      December 2004

              

          

 

 

  

                  January 2004


------------------------------------------------------------
Coach Steve Pavlovic's Coaching Basketball Newsletter

"A newsletter of proven tips for youth basketball coaches"

12/31/2003 ** January 2004 Issue ** 
Steve Pavlovic, Editor, Steve@scoremorehoops.com
------------------------------------------------------------
By subscription only! Welcome to the current issue of
"Coach Steve Pavlovic's Coaching Basketball Newsletter".
You are receiving this newsletter because you
requested a subscription. Unsubscribe instructions
are at the end of this newsletter.

** Feel free to forward this ezine to any coaches that you
think this would benefit, or direct them to:
www.scoremorehoops.com
so that they can sign up for this newsletter! ** 

Welcome to all new subscribers! This ezine is published 
monthly, usually sent out on the first of each month. 

------------------------------------------------------------
IN THIS ISSUE
------------------------------------------------------------

=> Sponsorship Notice 
=> Feature Article - Spacing on Offense 
=> Shooting - Don't Wait for a Defender 
=> Rebounding - On Free Throws 
=> Passing - Get Open With This Simple Move 
=> Coaching Tip of the Month - Evaluate Your Team 
=> Subscribe/Unsubscribe information

------------------------------------------------------------
SPONSORSHIP NOTICE
------------------------------------------------------------
It's not too late to help your team with their shooting!

Read a sample of my "Score More Hoops" ebook!
www.scoremorehoops.com

Also, make sure to check out the archives if you are missing
a newsletter. 

------------------------------------------------------------
FEATURE ARTICLE, Spacing On Offense 
by Steve Pavlovic
------------------------------------------------------------

All of our teams run some type of offensive pattern. From
the simple give-and-go to the more complicated motion offense,
players need to go where they are designed to go to make
everything work. But as we know, that doesn't always happen.

So what is the problem? One of the main problems you will
notice when your offense is not executing is that your players
are not properly spaced. What is this spacing that I am
talking about? When we talk about spacing, we refer to the
proper position of all offensive players so that the offense
can run successfully and that one defender can't guard more
than one offensive player.

Let's look at an example. Say we have 2 players, one at the
high post in the middle of the free throw line, and one just 
outside of the elbow of the free throw line. If you imagine
this scenario, you can see that they are probably too close,
and one defender can actually guard both of these players. If
one of them does receive a pass, they won't be able to use the
other player as an option. We can correct this by moving the
player who is at the elbow farther outside. This gives them
better spacing to operate, plus makes the defense work harder
to guard each player. When one or the other receives a pass,
the other is now a viable option.

So if your offense has come to a halt, or you are not getting
good looks at the basket, walk your team through their offense
and see where spacing can make a difference. The more you can
make the defense work, and give your players the opportunity
to move, the easier time you will have scoring. 

------------------------------------------------------------
Shooting - Don't Wait For a Defender 

I have a few players this year who can get open in the lane.
We get them the ball, then they turn toward the hoop - and
wait for the defense to surround them!

Luckily, this is a correctable problem. By practicing on
receiving the pass and getting squared to the basket, they
are much more prepared. The triple threat postition that we
have reviewed in the past helps to get them squared.

The other thing I work on is blocking out all the distractions.
By having the player receive passes over and over again,
with a defender coming at them, I am able to teach the player
to only focus on getting the ball, squaring up to the basket
and shooting the ball. They shouldn't even pay attention to
the defender. 


------------------------------------------------------------
Rebounding - On Free Throws 

I was watching a tournament game last week and saw a team
win a close game. The way they won it though was unusual.
They scored their last 3 buckets off of missed free throws!

How could this happen? Well, the defensive team was not
blocking out on each of the free throws. They kept moving
toward the basket when the ball hit the rim, instead of
making the move in front of the offensive players. You must
slide in front of your opponent and get into blocking out
position. But since this team kept going toward the basket
first, the ball went over their heads and right back to
the offense 3 times in a row. They had an easy put back each
time.

One drill I like to run sets up this exact situation. I have
my players like up for a free throw, with players in each
spot and having the shooter rotate. When the ball is shot,
each player must make the correct move that will happen
during a game - the people on the low block must step in
front of the offensive players, someone must block out the
shooter, and the offense must make a move to get the rebound.
This drill helps them to understand what to do when we shoot
a free throw and when our opponent shoots a free throw. 

------------------------------------------------------------
Passing - Get Open With This Simple Move

Do your point guards get frustated because no one will get
open? We've all seen this, where the offensive players make
their initial move, the defender is overplaying them, and they
just stand there expecting a pass. Unless the ball is going
to go through the defender, they are never going to get this
pass.

Players need to be taught that they must move to get open.
If the first move leaves them covered, then they must make
another move. If they don't, the offense can't work.

A simple move that I teach my players is called a V cut.
What the V cut consists of is to move back from where you
just came, then make a quick jab step and come back out
a little bit closer to the ball. If you do this on the
floor, you will see it creates a V shape, and that's why it's
called a V cut. It's a powerful move that gives the offensive 
player a split second to get free. Everyone must be on the
same page for this to work, because the player making the cut
must be given the pass as soon as they are open.

------------------------------------------------------------
Coaching Tip of the Month - Evaluate Your Team 

I know from the email that I receive that many of you are
near the midpoint of your season. This is a great time for
a midseason review.

What do we look at? First of all, how are the players
developing? Are they catching on to your offense and defense?
Are they doing well with the fundamentals? If not, it's not
too late to make adjustments. Focus on the problem areas 
until they are resolved.

How about you as a coach? Do you feel you are doing the
right things to help your team? If not, change your methods
so that your players will benefit in the second half of the
season. Look especially if your team is getting frustrated.
What can you do to help them succeed and play as a team?
Simplify things if your players don't understand. Then add
back on as your players perfect the basics. That will help
make the season a success for everyone. 

------------------------------------------------------------
Good Luck to everyone as we start 2004!
------------------------------------------------------------

Stephen Pavlovic

Send any questions, comments, or ideas to me at:
Steve@scoremorehoops.com

------------------------------------------------------------
Copyright 2003 by Stephen Pavlovic. All rights Reserved.
------------------------------------------------------------


            February 2004


------------------------------------------------------------
Coach Steve Pavlovic's Coaching Basketball Newsletter

"A newsletter of proven tips for youth basketball coaches"

01/31/2004 ** February 2004 Issue ** 
Steve Pavlovic, Editor, Steve@scoremorehoops.com
------------------------------------------------------------
By subscription only! Welcome to the current issue of
"Coach Steve Pavlovic's Coaching Basketball Newsletter".
You are receiving this newsletter because you
requested a subscription. Unsubscribe instructions
are at the end of this newsletter.

** Feel free to forward this ezine to any coaches that you
think this would benefit, or direct them to:
www.scoremorehoops.com
so that they can sign up for this newsletter! ** 

Welcome to all new subscribers! This ezine is published 
monthly, usually sent out on the first of each month. 

------------------------------------------------------------
IN THIS ISSUE
------------------------------------------------------------

=> Sponsorship Notice 
=> Feature Article - Learn Multiple Positions 
=> Shooting - Use Some Arc 
=> Dribbling - Keep the Ball Close When Guarded 
=> Defense - Slightly Overplay Your Man 
=> Coaching Tip of the Month - Watch the Videotape 
=> Subscribe/Unsubscribe information

------------------------------------------------------------
SPONSORSHIP NOTICE
------------------------------------------------------------
It's not too late to help your team with their shooting!

Read a sample of my "Score More Hoops" ebook!
www.scoremorehoops.com

Also, make sure to check out the archives if you are missing
a newsletter. 

*Thank you to everyone who has sent suggestions on my advanced
manual! I am going back and adding some topics that have been
requested. It will delay the release, but it will ultimately
make the book even more helpful. Thanks again to everyone
that has given their input!

------------------------------------------------------------
FEATURE ARTICLE, Learn Multiple Positions 
by Steve Pavlovic
------------------------------------------------------------
I hope everyone's season is progressing well and your
players are learning. I have watched a lot of games over the
past month. I am one of our basketball coaches supervisors at
our school, so I want to see that our teams are being taught
properly. I also assist any coaches who need help teaching
any skills to the players.

The one thing I stress to the coaches in our program is to
get your players to all learn at least 2 positions on offense
and defense. I find this to be helpful for 3 main reasons.
First, if someone is sick or injured, they have a backup who 
knows the position. Second, you never know when a player is
going to grow, or what new athletes you may get from one
season to the next. This helps reduce the learning curve if
you need to change someone's spot on the floor. Third, it
helps everyone to understand the offense better. They not
only know what they are supposed to be doing, but they will
now know at least one other position. This should help your
offense to run a little smoother, knowing what moves the other
players will be making.

On defense, as you know, we teach man-to-man defense. But I
still stress the same thing. I want my players to know how to
guard the other team's point guard, wing, or post player.
All of them have their slight variations, like in half-fronting
the post. Being able to play more than one spot on defense
makes us less vulnerable to teams posting up a smaller guard
in hopes that we won't be able to defend it.

So review your plan and see where this can be instituted. You
can start by doing this in practice, then changing a position
or 2 during the game. Keep it so that your point guard and
wings are switching, or your post player and power forward
are switching. The experience they get from this will help
your team down the road. 
------------------------------------------------------------
Shooting - Use Some Arc 

A point to stress to your players is that when the ball is
shot, it must have some arc in order to go into the basket.
A flat shot will usually hit off the front or back of the
rim and take a hard bounce.

I show my players that they must push the ball up and out
from their body. Some players just try to push the ball
away from their body, which leads to a flat shot. The ball
must be pushed up, out and slight away from the body in
order to achieve the correct arc. 

A good way to demonstrate this is by shooting the ball
from only a few feet from the basket. This shows the player
how to start developing the correct arc on the ball so that
it will go in the basket. 

------------------------------------------------------------
Dribbling - Keep the Ball Close When Guarded 

When pushing the ball on a fast break, the dribble should 
be out in front of you. But when you are being closely
guarded, the dribbler must keep the ball close to them and
use their body to protect the ball.

I teach my players to keep the ball in the dribble pocket.
As you know from me talking about this, the dribble pocket
is the area created when we move the foot on the ball side
back, giving us a protected space to dribble the ball. By
using that and our body, the defender will have a tough time
stealing the ball without committing a foul. 

The other problem players have is a weak dribble. Have your
players dribble the ball low, use their fingertips, and
keep the ball going at a good pace. 

Between both of these, your guards will be able to deal with 
defensive pressure. I also like to set up full and half court
drills where my players dribble while being closely guarded
by a teammate. They are instructed not to reach unless the
ball is put right in front of them. Setting up these game
situations in practice helps us when we play the real games. 

------------------------------------------------------------
Defense - Slightly Overplay Your Man

Once my players understand the concept of staying between
the player they are guarding and the basket, I start
teaching them how to slightly overplay on defense to put
pressure on the other team.

To overplay your opponent, you want to force them to dribble
to their weak side. For most players, that is to their left.
So if I am on defense, I will move slightly to my left and
put my left foot forward on defense. My left hand is also out,
with my palm up. This is discouraging your opponent from 
going to their right. Their option then is to go to the left
side. This is where you can tap the ball away from a weak
ball handler, or bring a teammate up to double team the ball.

What if the player is left handed? Then just switch what I
described above. You will then want to force the player to
the right side. Be ready to perform a drop step and stay with
the player you are guarding, just in case they take a quick
step to get by you. 

Whichever way you do it, you can use this to keep your 
opponent off balance. It makes them start thinking about you
every time they get the ball, instead of what they are
supposed to be doing on offense. It can take an opponent
completely out of the game. 

------------------------------------------------------------
Coaching Tip of the Month - Watch the Videotape 

One thing I like to do with a team that I coach is to tape
a game that we are playing. I usually wait until we are 5 or 6
games into the season, then I find a time to have it taped.

At one of the next practices, we go to a classroom and view
the tape. I will rewind it at times if there is something I
want them to focus on. It's funny though to see the expression
on some of the players faces. They get to see themselves in
action, and sometimes it isn't pretty! Things that I have
corrected them on, which are sometimes things that they
insist they are doing, they get to see for themselves what I
am seeing. Things like blocking out and running the offense
become clear as to who is doing the skills correctly and
who isn't.

So if you have time, try it with your team. Find a parent
who is willing to tape the game. Then view it before you
show it to the team, so you know what parts you want to
focus on. I wouldn't do this for more than 20-30 minutes, the
players start to lose focus on watching the game. Pick out
the important part, even write them down so you don't forget.
this is a very valuable teaching tool for you and your team
to take advantage of. 

------------------------------------------------------------
Good Luck to everyone in 2004!
------------------------------------------------------------

Stephen Pavlovic

Send any questions, comments, or ideas to me at:
Steve@scoremorehoops.com

------------------------------------------------------------
Copyright 2004 by Stephen Pavlovic. All rights Reserved.
------------------------------------------------------------


              March 2004


------------------------------------------------------------
Coach Steve Pavlovic's Coaching Basketball Newsletter

"A newsletter of proven tips for youth basketball coaches"

02/29/2004 ** March 2004 Issue ** 
Steve Pavlovic, Editor, Steve@scoremorehoops.com
------------------------------------------------------------
By subscription only! Welcome to the current issue of
"Coach Steve Pavlovic's Coaching Basketball Newsletter".
You are receiving this newsletter because you
requested a subscription. Unsubscribe instructions
are at the end of this newsletter.

** Feel free to forward this ezine to any coaches that you
think this would benefit, or direct them to:
www.scoremorehoops.com
so that they can sign up for this newsletter! ** 

Welcome to all new subscribers! This ezine is published 
monthly, usually sent out on the first of each month. 

------------------------------------------------------------
IN THIS ISSUE
------------------------------------------------------------

=> Sponsorship Notice 
=> Feature Article - The NCAA Tournament 
=> Shooting - Iron Man Drill 
=> Offense - Take What the Defense Gives You 
=> Rebounding - Block Out Drill 
=> Coaching Tip of the Month - Compliment Your Players 
=> Subscribe/Unsubscribe information

------------------------------------------------------------
SPONSORSHIP NOTICE
------------------------------------------------------------
Need help with teaching shooting, defense, passing, dribbling,
or rebounding? 

Read a sample of my "Score More Hoops" ebook!

www.scoremorehoops.com


------------------------------------------------------------
FEATURE ARTICLE, The NCAA Tournament 
by Steve Pavlovic
------------------------------------------------------------
Well, it's that time of the year again! Though my season will
be winding down in the next few weeks, I always get excited
about the NCAA Tournament. So much basketball in a few weeks
time, it's a basketball junkie's dream.

I encourage my players to watch either High school games or
college games. I believe they can learn a lot from either of
these. Whether it be on offense or defense, I want my players
to see how things work at the next level, and what effort
they must put forth to be successful.

But there are also a few points that they can take from the
Tournament. At this time of year, you can't afford a bad game.
If you do, you're out. So I want them to come away with the
idea that playing as a team is extremely important. Even if
one player has a bad game, someone else must step up to pick
up the slack.

The other point is that the team that is most fundamentally
sound usually goes the farthest. Too many turnovers and
bad passes are sure to eliminate any team. But the team that
takes care of the ball, hits the easy shots, and plays tough
defense usually come out on top.

So encourage your team to watch some of the tournament games.
Tell them things that you want them to pay attention to. Then
remind them how they need to practice to get themselves up
to that same level! 

------------------------------------------------------------
Shooting - Iron Man Drill 

A good drill to get your players to use the backboard down
low is a drill I call the Iron Man Drill. Going from block 
to block, the players go 1 at a time putting the ball off the
backboard and in. I usually give them 1 minute each, which
should give them plenty of shots from the right and left
block.

Stress to them how important it is to use that backboard. I
see so many players who get the ball down low, then miss a
2 foot shot and let it roll off the rim. Make them use the
backboard in this drill, so they become accustomed to using
it during a game also.

I will keep track of how many each player makes, and the
winner usually gets to take a break while the others must
run a set of lines. This gives them all incentive to win.
Even though this drill is meant more for the post players,
I also have my guards join in. This helps them with their
post up moves. This is also a great drill that players can
do on their own at home. 


------------------------------------------------------------
Offense - Take What the Defense Gives You 

Every team we play against has some type of set offense. My
team does also. But after spending a lot of time getting to
run a certain pattern, my teams sometimes turn into robots!
By that, I mean that they will look only to a certain spot
that we have told them about, even if another player is wide
open.

So I always tell my teams to "Take what the defense gives
you". By that I mean that if something is wide open, take
advantage of it. I will even set up situations in practice,
like leaving a player unguarded, or setting up different
matchups. This forces them to think, and I can stop them if
I need to. By showing them these situations, they are better
prepared when they see them during a game.

------------------------------------------------------------
Rebounding - Block Out Drill

A lot of times players get caught up in watching a shot go
up when we run a rebounding drill, that they forget to block
out their partner. 

So I like to run a drill at center court that teaches
clocking out, but takes the shot out of the equation. I will
match up players, usually by size, with one on offense facing
the circle, and one on defense, with that person facing the
offensive player. I place the ball in the middle of the circle
and blow the whistle. The defnesive player must turn and block
out the offensive player, while the offensive player tries to
use a spin move to get to the ball. You can do 2 or 3 groups
at once, all going after the same ball.

I like this drill because it cuts out the shot and makes the
player focus on their primary responsibility, which is to
block out the player they are matched up with. I have them
keep the offense player out for a 3 count, then they can go
for the ball. Be careful, this drill can get physical. Make
sure that both the offensive and defensive players are using
legal moves and not committing a foul. 

------------------------------------------------------------
Coaching Tip of the Month - Compliment Your Players 

I have coached and been coached by people with many different
styles. Some were always positive, some were negative, some
didn't give much feedback at all. 

My coaching style falls somewhere in between. I correct my
players when they are doing something incorrectly. How else
are they going to know how to do it the right way? But I try
to be patient, especially when going over a new concept.

I also believe you have to compliment a player when they
do something well. Whether it be at practice or a game, a
player will give you a better effort if they know you are
paying attention to everyone on the court and what they are
doing.

So keep a balance in your coaching style. Tell them when
they need to be corrected, but be the first one there to
pat them on the back when they have done a good job!

------------------------------------------------------------
Good Luck to everyone!
------------------------------------------------------------

Stephen Pavlovic

Send any questions, comments, or ideas to me at:
Steve@scoremorehoops.com

------------------------------------------------------------
Copyright 2004 by Stephen Pavlovic. All rights Reserved.
------------------------------------------------------------


             April 2004


------------------------------------------------------------
Coach Steve Pavlovic's Coaching Basketball Newsletter

"A newsletter of proven tips for youth basketball coaches"

03/31/2004 ** April 2004 Issue ** 
Steve Pavlovic, Editor, Steve@scoremorehoops.com
------------------------------------------------------------
By subscription only! Welcome to the current issue of
"Coach Steve Pavlovic's Coaching Basketball Newsletter".
You are receiving this newsletter because you
requested a subscription. Unsubscribe instructions
are at the end of this newsletter.

** Feel free to forward this ezine to any coaches that you
think this would benefit, or direct them to:
www.scoremorehoops.com
so that they can sign up for this newsletter! ** 

Welcome to all new subscribers! This ezine is published 
monthly, usually sent out on the first of each month. 

------------------------------------------------------------
IN THIS ISSUE
------------------------------------------------------------

=> Sponsorship Notice 
=> Feature Article - Get Ready for Summer Camps
=> ** Excerpt From My Advanced Techniques Book ** 
=> Shooting - Perform Drills With a Teammate 
=> Defense - Strengthen Your Legs 
=> Coaching Tip of the Month - End of Season Talk 
=> Subscribe/Unsubscribe information

------------------------------------------------------------
SPONSORSHIP NOTICE
------------------------------------------------------------
Need help with teaching shooting, defense, passing, dribbling,
or rebounding? 

Read a sample of my "Score More Hoops" ebook!

www.scoremorehoops.com


------------------------------------------------------------
FEATURE ARTICLE, Get Ready For Summer Camps 
by Steve Pavlovic
------------------------------------------------------------

Well, the season is over for most of us. Another great year
has come to an end. But it's not too early to start planning
ahead.

One thing I have always liked is having my players go to
summer camps. It doesn't really matter which ones, though
some are better than others. But I just like the fact that
the kids are picking up a ball and playing the game. By
going to a camp with either high school or college coaches,
these players will have the basics reinforced. Sometimes
hearing a skill described in a different manner can help
a player better grasp the concept. We all learn things a 
little bit different, so I have no problem with that.

So encourage your players to go to a summer camp. They 
usually last from a few days to a week, and there are probably
a few close to your community. Or if you have a summer league
team, encourage your players to join.

One thing we have done this year at our school is to notify
the players of camps in our surrounding areas. I have assembled
information that we have received into a compact few pages
of camps, along with website and contact info. This will
make it easier for the players to know what's available, and
they can get a few groups together to car pool. This info is
sent to the players and their parents, so everyone knows the
same stuff. 


------------------------------------------------------------
Excerpt From My Advanced Techniques Book 

In my "Defend the Hoop" ebook, I showed you how to play 
tough man-to-man defense. Well, what about if we want to apply 
pressure full court, and not just half court? Say we are down 
by a few points late in the game. We need the ball back 
quickly. We certainly aren't going to wait while our opponent 
walks the ball up the court. In this instance, we will put 
pressure on the ball from one baseline to the other.
We play full court man-to-man defense similar to our half 
court set. We will stay low, taking short quick steps to stay 
ahead of the offensive player. You want to stay between your 
man and the basket as much as possible. Shade the player you 
are guarding so that they have to dribble the ball with their 
weak hand. 
So what do you have to do different? First, you must give 
the offensive player a little more room. Instead of being a 
step or so from the offensive player as you would in half 
court defense, you want to give them a step to 1 steps. You 
can adjust this as you see how quick the offensive player is 
capable of going. The slower and less sure that they can 
handle the ball, the closer you can play them and apply 
pressure.
Second, you must be ready to drop step quickly. When the 
offensive player changes direction and heads upcourt, you 
must drop step and get back in front of them. You will go 
on more of an angle than if you were playing half court 
defense.
Third, the defender will have to run as much as shuffle. 
As the offensive player changes directions to get the ball 
across midcourt, it will be hard to stay between them and 
the basket by only shuffling. The defender must be prepared 
to run to get back in front of the offensive player if they 
feel they are losing the advantage. You never want to have 
the opposing team's ball handler fly by your defender. 
That leaves your team shorthanded, and someone must step up 
to guard the player with the ball. If your defense doesn't 
rotate quickly, you might give up an easy bucket. That defeats 
the whole purpose of why we would be pressuring full court!

*** Well, that's it for now. I'll keep you posted as I near
completion on this book. Of course, there will be photos to
explain each skill. *** 

------------------------------------------------------------
Shooting - Perform Drills With a Teammate

I can remember when I was young, a few weeks after school
let out, I would tell my parents, "I'm bored". They would
give me ideas about what to do, including going outside and
practicing my basketball. But I was often not motivated
enough to do that on my own.

Now that I'm a parent, my children say the same thing. But
I have learned that if you have a teammate working with you,
practice is a lot more enjoyable. I encourage my players to
get together with a teammate or someone else who they can
work with. Having similar goals makes it easier to work on
drills and makes it more enjoyable. This also tends to bring
out the best in both yourself and your teammate. 

------------------------------------------------------------
Defense - Strengthen Your Legs

In order to play defense effectively, your legs must be in
good shape. Let's face it, shuffling and staying in front of
the player you are guarding is an essential part of being a
good defender.

How do you keep your players in shape over the summer months?
I encourage them to stay in basketball shape. This includes
playing pick up games in the driveway or park, and getting
in some sprints and running. And yes, even performing some
shuffling, whether it be in the driveway or on a court. This
will strengthen the leg muscles and get you ready for the
upcoming basketball season. 

------------------------------------------------------------
Coaching Tip of the Month - End of Season Talk 

At the end of the season, I always like to have a little
get together to show my appreciation to the players for their
hard work throughout the season. It's a simple thing, usually
just pizza and pop. It's a chance to get together and talk
about things that you don't get time to during the season.

I always end this with a few final words about the season.
I compliment them all on the things we have done well as a 
team. I like ending on a high note for the season, and get
them looking ahead to even greater things in the next
season! 

------------------------------------------------------------
Good Luck to everyone!
------------------------------------------------------------

Stephen Pavlovic

Send any questions, comments, or ideas to me at:
Steve@scoremorehoops.com

------------------------------------------------------------
Copyright 2004 by Stephen Pavlovic. All rights Reserved.
------------------------------------------------------------


             May 2004


------------------------------------------------------------
Coach Steve Pavlovic's Coaching Basketball Newsletter

"A newsletter of proven tips for youth basketball coaches"

04/30/2004 ** May 2004 Issue ** 
Steve Pavlovic, Editor, Steve@scoremorehoops.com
------------------------------------------------------------
By subscription only! Welcome to the current issue of
"Coach Steve Pavlovic's Coaching Basketball Newsletter".
You are receiving this newsletter because you
requested a subscription. Unsubscribe instructions
are at the end of this newsletter.

** Feel free to forward this ezine to any coaches that you
think this would benefit, or direct them to:
www.scoremorehoops.com
so that they can sign up for this newsletter! ** 

Welcome to all new subscribers! This ezine is published 
monthly, usually sent out on the first of each month. 

------------------------------------------------------------
IN THIS ISSUE
------------------------------------------------------------

=> Sponsorship Notice 
=> Feature Article - Coaches Must Learn Too
=> Shooting - Take Your Time 
=> Rebounding - Make Contact 
=> Dribbling - Control the Ball 
=> Coaching Tip of the Month - Improve on Your Weaknesses 
=> Subscribe/Unsubscribe information

------------------------------------------------------------
SPONSORSHIP NOTICE
------------------------------------------------------------
Need help with teaching shooting, defense, passing, dribbling,
or rebounding? 

Read a sample of my "Score More Hoops" ebook!

www.scoremorehoops.com


------------------------------------------------------------
FEATURE ARTICLE, Getting New Drills and Tips 
by Steve Pavlovic
------------------------------------------------------------
The internet is a great place to get basketball information.
Whenever I am looking for basketball drills or tips, I will
look it up online. Many times, I will think, "Why didn't I
think of that?" It's a great thought provoking tool.

There are a number of sites that I use. These include:
Coach Mike Well's site(hometown.aol.com/coachmjw/pp22.htm)
The Basketball Highway (www.bbhighway.com)
Power Basketball(www.powerbasketball.com)

There are many others out there, these are just a few. Check
them out, they have a lot of links and great info. Also look
at viewing any basketball forums. There you can see what 
"hot topics" coaches are talking about, or ask a question
yourself. I usually find that I'm not alone when I encounter
a basketball problem, someone else is probably going through
the same thing. It's kind of a coaches support line!

If any of my subscribers have other sites that they find 
very helpful, let me know and I'll pass them along.

It's always nice to get a fresh opinion and a different point
of view from other coaches. It will help make you a better
coach, and help your players in the long run. 

------------------------------------------------------------
Shooting - Take Your Time 

The nice thing about the off-season is that you aren't 
pressed for time. During the regular season, practices and
games seem to come up so fast, that players and coaches
don't always feel fully prepared.

I tell my players to slow down when practicing shooting
drills during the summer. This gives the player time to
make sure that each step of the process is being done
correctly. See when you set yourself up. Are you squared up
and have a solid base? Is your elbow in and the ball off to
the side? Then when you shoot the ball, hold the pose to
make sure that you are turning your shoulders, and that you
are following through. Once you can make shots on a 
consistent basis, and you feel comfortable with the technique,
then move up to game speed. If you then have problems again,
you can always slow down and diagnose your problem. By
showing your players this, they can fix their own shots
when you aren't around! 

------------------------------------------------------------
Rebounding - Make Contact

The single biggest problem in rebounding that I see is
players not making contact. If you make contact with the
player you are guarding, you force that player to make a
different move. You throw them off of their planned path,
buying yourslef time to get the ball and keeping the inside
position. No contact allows your opponent to just walk right
around you.

Contact is especially important when blocking out a taller
player. I see coaches complaining that they didn't get an
over-the-back call, when in effect the opponent didn't
touch their player, they just reached right above them. 
Stressing this basic fundamental will improve your teams
rebounding a lot, and cut down on your opponents second
chance shots. 

In drills, myself or one of my assistants will keep an
eye on this. Set up your drill, but make it a point to
focus on making the initial contact. Repetition is the key,
along with the knowledge that it will make each player a
better rebounder. 

------------------------------------------------------------
Dribbling - Control the Ball

I always tell my players that there is no excuse for not
practicing their ballhandling - you don't even need a 
basketball hoop to do it! All you need is your garage,
driveway or sidewalk.

But just dribbling in place can be boring. I encourage my
players to even go on walks while dribbling. Just walking
down the block will help a player work on controlling the
ball with their fingertips. That will help when you take
your game back onto the court.

------------------------------------------------------------
Coaching Tip of the Month - Improve on Your Weaknesses 

I like to sit down with my coaches after the season and 
evaluate everything. What went well and what didn't? I'll
then make up a list of things that we need to improve on.

But what do you do with this list? Well, once we know our
weak areas, we will start working on a plan to improve in
these areas. Say, for instance, passing is one of our
weaknesses. I'll talk with our coaches about how we taught
passing. Can we improve on our method? Were we not being
clear with our instructions? Did we not emphasize the
correct technique enough? Do we need to develop new drills?

Once we have brainstormed about this, we can come up with
a plan. Besides refining our teaching technique, we will
also come up with some new drills, or new twists on a current
drill. Players always like something new! I will try to make
it interesting and challenging for them. This way, we keep
everyone's attention and are able to improve at the same time.

I would recommend that you do this same thing for each
of your weak areas that your team has. You will be pleasantly
surprised at how much more prepared your team will be.

------------------------------------------------------------
Good Luck to everyone!
------------------------------------------------------------

Stephen Pavlovic

Send any questions, comments, or ideas to me at:
Steve@scoremorehoops.com

------------------------------------------------------------
Copyright 2004 by Stephen Pavlovic. All rights Reserved.
------------------------------------------------------------


          June 2004


------------------------------------------------------------
Coach Steve Pavlovic's Coaching Basketball Newsletter

"A newsletter of proven tips for youth basketball coaches"

05/31/2004 ** June 2004 Issue ** 
Steve Pavlovic, Editor, Steve@scoremorehoops.com
------------------------------------------------------------
By subscription only! Welcome to the current issue of
"Coach Steve Pavlovic's Coaching Basketball Newsletter".
You are receiving this newsletter because you
requested a subscription. Unsubscribe instructions
are at the end of this newsletter.

** Feel free to forward this ezine to any coaches that you
think this would benefit, or direct them to:
www.scoremorehoops.com
so that they can sign up for this newsletter! ** 

Welcome to all new subscribers! This ezine is published 
monthly, usually sent out on the first of each month. 

------------------------------------------------------------
IN THIS ISSUE
------------------------------------------------------------

=> Sponsorship Notice 
=> Feature Article - The NBA Playoffs
=> Shooting - Shoot Off of the Dribble 
=> Rebounding - Increase Your Jump 
=> Passing - Give a Target 
=> Coaching Tip of the Month - More Breaks When It's Hot 
=> Subscribe/Unsubscribe information

------------------------------------------------------------
SPONSORSHIP NOTICE
------------------------------------------------------------
Need help with teaching shooting, defense, passing, dribbling,
or rebounding? 

Read a sample of my "Score More Hoops" ebook!

www.scoremorehoops.com


------------------------------------------------------------
FEATURE ARTICLE, The NBA Playoffs 
by Steve Pavlovic
------------------------------------------------------------

The NBA Playoffs are now down to the last few series. This
is the time that I like to tune in! The regular season seems
to drag on, and many times the players seem disinterested.
But come crunch time, the intensity really heats up. Tough
defense is played, and teamwork comes back into play. You
can't win a championship by yourself.

This is the level that I want my teams to be at. I want
them to approach each game as though it is the NBA Finals.
That doesn't mean I expect them to dunk or hit 3-pointers.
But what I want them to do is to play as hard as they can.
We don't play an 82 game schedule, so I don't think it's
asking a lot for my team to be prepared each and every game.

Will we have off nights? Sure, there will be times that
nothing seems to go right. But one thing your team can
always do is to hustle, play good defense, and play as a 
team. If you can get your team to do that, your program
will be very successful. 

------------------------------------------------------------
Shooting - Shoot Off of the Dribble 

Very few times will you receive a pass and be in perfect
position to shoot. Many times you will be penetrating to the
basket. So you must have your team ready to shoot off of the
dribble.

As I talk about in my Score More Hoops book, shooting off 
the dribble, or shooting on the move, is a skill that will 
make your team better offensively. You won't be able to 
stand around and just shoot jump shots all of the time. 
You must penetrate with the dribble, finding the openings in 
the defense. Then you will pull up for the jump shot when you 
are open.

So just how do you teach your players to do this? The key
to it is the inside foot, the foot closest to the basket.
When the player uses dribble penetration and they are getting
ready to stop and go up for the jump shot, the inside foot
should be forward and pointed toward the basket. You can
then use that foot to pivot on and square the rest of your
body to the basket. The next step would be to go straight
up in the air and shoot your normal jump shot. Don't lean
forward, that will throw off your shot. 

------------------------------------------------------------
Rebounding - Increase Your Jump

All players want to have this great vertical leap. It's
not for rebounding of course, it's because they want to
dunk. Most of us are not gifted with great leaping ability,
so it is another area that we must work on.

What kinds of drills can we work on to get players to 
increase their vertical leap? First, you can get your players
to simply stand a few feet from the backboard, then toss the
ball off of the backboard and jump with arms extended to
grab the rebound. The player then comes down with the ball
and continues doing this, trying to jump as high as they
can each time. Start with 10-15, then increase the number
as it becomes easier.

The next drill would be to jump back and forth over the
baseline or sideline. Once again, try to jump as high as
you can, going back and forth across the line. You can also
jump rope to increase your vertical jump.

Any of these drills can be done with ankle weights on. Just
be careful, the weights should only be a few pounds. If the
player's ankles start to hurt, they should stop. We don't
want any one to get injured.

These drills will help your players during the season. They
will also help your rebounding on both the offensive and
defensive ends of the court. And at some point, some of
your players might be able to dunk after all! 

------------------------------------------------------------
Passing - Give a Target

I always stress to my post players and anyone posting up
inside that they must give a target. It helps the passer to
know where you as an offensive player want to receive the
ball. After all, you should have an idea of what kind of
move you want to make when your receive the pass.

I also like my players to do this as a sign to our other
teammates. If they don't feel they are open, I tell them not
to put a hand out signalling for a pass. They will do this
if they are double-teamed or don't feel they are in position
to score.

So show your players how to signal for the ball. If they want
a high pass, put the hand out high. If they want a bounce 
pass to their right, have them put their hand low. Practice
this with some simple passes from the wing and corner
positions and all of your players are on the same page.

-------------------------------------------------------------
Coaching Tip of the Month - More Breaks When It's Hot 

As the weather heats up, make sure that you give your
players more frequent breaks. You don't want players to
dehydrate, cramp up, or even pass out. Make sure they bring
water or some type of sports drink, or have access to a
water fountain. NO SODA POP! 

While you are giving your players a break, you can talk
to them about what you were going over or something that
you will be going over. This gives them a chance to cool
down, while you can keep going without falling too far
off of your schedule. 

This will also help their concentration. A tired player
stops listening after awhile, while a rested player should
be more attentive. They will be able to focus better on the
skill you are trying to teach. 

------------------------------------------------------------
Good Luck to everyone!
------------------------------------------------------------

Stephen Pavlovic

Send any questions, comments, or ideas to me at:
Steve@scoremorehoops.com

------------------------------------------------------------
Copyright 2004 by Stephen Pavlovic. All rights Reserved.
------------------------------------------------------------


          July 2004


------------------------------------------------------------
Coach Steve Pavlovic's Coaching Basketball Newsletter

"A newsletter of proven tips for youth basketball coaches"

06/30/2004 ** July 2004 Issue ** 
Steve Pavlovic, Editor, Steve@scoremorehoops.com
------------------------------------------------------------
By subscription only! Welcome to the current issue of
"Coach Steve Pavlovic's Coaching Basketball Newsletter".
You are receiving this newsletter because you
requested a subscription. Unsubscribe instructions
are at the end of this newsletter.

** Feel free to forward this ezine to any coaches that you
think this would benefit, or direct them to:
www.scoremorehoops.com
so that they can sign up for this newsletter! ** 

Welcome to all new subscribers! This ezine is published 
monthly, usually sent out on the first of each month. 

------------------------------------------------------------
IN THIS ISSUE
------------------------------------------------------------

=> Sponsorship Notice 
=> Feature Article - Team Concept vs. Individuals
=> Offense - Posting Up (Part 1) 
=> Dribbling - Help to Keep Heads Up 
=> Shooting - Ball in Proper Position 
=> Coaching Tip of the Month - Use Diagrams 
=> Subscribe/Unsubscribe information

------------------------------------------------------------
SPONSORSHIP NOTICE
------------------------------------------------------------
My new "Advanced Basketball Techniques" ebook is ready!!!

I will be sending out an email with a special offer for all
newsletter subscribers and those who purchased my "Score
More Hoops" ebook.

Look for that email in the coming days! 

------------------------------------------------------------
FEATURE ARTICLE, Team Concept vs. Individuals 
by Steve Pavlovic
------------------------------------------------------------

That was quite an upset in the NBA Finals. Not many people
gave the Pistons a chance to even win one game, let alone 
the series. I have to admit, I was one of those people that
felt that way too. But I was glad to see that a group that
played as a team beat a group of individuals.

Were the Lakers talented this season? They sure were. 
Having a number of future Hall of Fame players playing
together put them in a great position. But the problem was,
they played like individuals all season long. They never
came together as a team.

As a basketball coach, I was excited to see the things 
that the Detroit Pistons were doing. They played tough team
defense and hit the open players on offense. They weren't
selfish and didn't back down from the Lakers. They set a
very good example to stress to my team in the upcoming
season!

So take a few notes now about what the Pistons did to
succeed. Then make sure you pull those notes out for your 
team in the fall. It should provide some inspiration that
your team can compete with any other team, no matter what
other people say. So play as a team, stress the team concept
to your players and good things will happen. 

------------------------------------------------------------
Offense - Posting Up (Part 1) 

The closer we can get the ball to the basket on offense,
the easier we should be able to score. One of the main ways
I use is to get the ball to our center or post player. This
player must move into position to be effective.

The first thing I tell my post players is to go where the
defense isn't. Don't stand behind a defender, you will never
get the ball. Now just getting to an open spot doesn't mean
that you will receive a pass. The defense will react, so you
must also react.

This leads to the next part, which is the actual posting up
move. To do this, position yourself so that the defender is
behind you or off to one side. Then establish a solid base,
shoulder width apart, and use your body to keep the defender
from reaching for the pass.

I will cover more of this in next month's issue. I will
also cover this in detail, along with photos, in my new
"Advanced Basketball Techniques" ebook. 

------------------------------------------------------------
Dribbling - Help to Keep Heads Up

I see some coaches get very frustrated trying to teach 
players how to dribble correctly. Keeping them from looking
at the ball is probably the hardest part. But I think I can
help on this issue.

When teaching players, have them line up and face you. I
like to have them spread out across the width of the court, 
many 8-10 at a time. Then I have them get into their dribbling
stance and start dribbling. I will then tell them that they
must look up and yell out how many fingers I am holding up.
This forces them to start keeping their heads up. If I see a
few keeping their heads down, I will go over and make them
give me the answer 2 or 3 times in a row. I also use this
when we are doing our basic dribbling up and down the court.

Another method is to put a defender in front of them. This
also forces them to keep their heads up. I use both of these
drills a lot with the younger players. Once they get in the
habit of keeping their head up, it becomes second nature to
them. It will also help them on the court, as they can see
any open teammates as well as where the defense is set up. 

------------------------------------------------------------
Shooting - Ball in Proper Position

One of the biggest things I concentrate on when teaching a
player how to shoot is the position of the ball. The ball must
be off to the side so that the elbow can be straight. That
means off to the right side if the player is right handed, or
off to the left side if the player is left handed. 

Remember, we want the elbow and hand to be staight in order 
for the ball to go on a straight path. If the ball gets
placed in the middle of the body, which is what I see a lot of
times, there is no way that the elbow can be straight. In this
case, the ball will get pushed to one side or the other and
not on a stright line.

Having a player stand 3-4 feet in front of the rim and 
shoot with one hand will get the players to understand this
concept. Then the opposite hand can be added, but should be
used only as the guide hand. 

-------------------------------------------------------------
Coaching Tip of the Month - Use Diagrams 

Whether I am instructing during the season or during a 
summer open gym, I like to use diagrams to explain drills
and different skills. This really helps the players, because
they can visualize what I am talking about before they get
into their positions. It's like an overview, so they can
see where everyone will be placed.

It doesn't have to be a long process either. You can use
a small erasable board, a notebook tablet, or a chalkboard
and chalk. Just a quick explanation will help your entire
team to be on the same page. 

------------------------------------------------------------
Good Luck to everyone!
------------------------------------------------------------

Stephen Pavlovic

Send any questions, comments, or ideas to me at:
Steve@scoremorehoops.com

------------------------------------------------------------
Copyright 2004 by Stephen Pavlovic. All rights Reserved.
------------------------------------------------------------


          August 2004


------------------------------------------------------------
Coach Steve Pavlovic's Coaching Basketball Newsletter

"A newsletter of proven tips for youth basketball coaches"

07/31/2004 ** August 2004 Issue ** 
Steve Pavlovic, Editor, Steve@scoremorehoops.com
------------------------------------------------------------
By subscription only! Welcome to the current issue of
"Coach Steve Pavlovic's Coaching Basketball Newsletter".
You are receiving this newsletter because you
requested a subscription. Unsubscribe instructions
are at the end of this newsletter.

** Feel free to forward this ezine to any coaches that you
think this would benefit, or direct them to:
www.scoremorehoops.com
so that they can sign up for this newsletter! ** 

Welcome to all new subscribers! This ezine is published 
monthly, usually sent out on the first of each month. 

------------------------------------------------------------
IN THIS ISSUE
------------------------------------------------------------

=> Sponsorship Notice 
=> Feature Article - Start Fresh as the New Season Begins 
=> Offense - Posting Up (Part 2) 
=> Passing - The Overhead Pass 
=> Shooting - The Triple Threat Position 
=> Coaching Tip of the Month - Break Up Drills 
=> Subscribe/Unsubscribe information

------------------------------------------------------------
SPONSORSHIP NOTICE
------------------------------------------------------------
My new "Advanced Basketball Techniques" ebook is ready!!!

I am also in the process of putting up a new website. I will
let you know when that happens! 

------------------------------------------------------------
FEATURE ARTICLE, Start Fresh as the New Season Begins 
by Steve Pavlovic
------------------------------------------------------------

It seems like my children just got out of school, and now
it's already August! That means that basketball is only a
few months away.

One thing I would encourage all coaches to do is to be
start fresh when the new season begins. This is especially
important when you have many of the same players returning
to your team. What I mean is to evaluate them as they are
playing now, not as you remember them from last season.
Many players go to camps and grow over the summer. That
same player who had a hard time shooting or dribbling last
season might have made big improvements. That can only help
our team!

So even though we want to lay out some plans of what we
want our team to do this season, don't lock players into
positions yet. Let them come to practice and show you how
much they have improved. And not just one practice either,
but a few weeks of practice. This gives everyone the same
opportunity. You never know when you will discover a highly
motivated and maturing player, waiting for their turn to
step up and help their team succeed!

To do this evaluation, go over drills that you were
performing last year. This should show you who has worked
on their skills over the summer. Then throw in a brand new
drill, just to see how everyone will react. Who catches on
quickly and who isn't paying attention? This info will help
you see who is ready to play this season. 


------------------------------------------------------------
Offense - Posting Up (Part 2) 

In last month's issue, we looked at the first part of
posting up. That included having our post player get to an
open spot, then setting up a good solid base while keeping
the defender to one side or the other. 

We are now ready to receive a pass from our teammate. Here's
where the second part of posting up comes into play. Our post
player needs to give a target for where they want the ball.
This means they need to put a hand out, low if they want a
bounce pass, high if they want a lob or overhead pass. Our
post player knows what they have in mind to do once they
receive the pass. They need to communicate that to their
teammate so that they receive the pass in the correct
location. If the post player doesn't feel they are open, they
should not put a hand out. This is a signal to their teammate
that they need to look elsewhere for an opportunity.

When the post player receives the pass, they should have an
idea of what they want to do. If things go the way we want
them to, the post player will receive the pass and go right
up for an easy shot. But it doesn't always work out that way.
The post must be aware that another defender might come over
to challenge them. They then need to look at passing to an
open teammate or getting the ball back out to the perimeter.

I cover posting up in my new "Advanced Basketball Techniques"
ebook. I include photos and step by step instructions for
doing this the correct way. Check it out for more information! 

------------------------------------------------------------
Passing - The Overhead Pass

After your players have perfected the bounce pass and the
chest pass, the overhead pass can be added. The form used
for the overhead pass is similar to the other 2 passes: the
player steps one foot forward with both hands on the side of
the ball. The difference is that the ball is now positioned
above your head. As the player steps toward their target,
the hands go forward and as the ball is released, the thumbs
should finish facing the floor and the palms facing their
teammate that they just passed to. They should aim at the
shoulders or above the head of their teammate.

When would we use this pass? There are a few occasions that
this pass will come in handy. One situation is when you are
passing the ball into the post, and your post player is
taller than the player that is guarding them. Another is when
we are getting the ball out from a defensive rebound and
starting a fastbreak. We don't want to throw the ball into
the middle of the defense as they get back. The overhead
pass avoids this. You could also use this pass if you were
being trapped and needed to get the ball out quickly. 

------------------------------------------------------------
Shooting - The Triple Threat Position

As I have discussed before, a player that receives a pass
should get into the triple threat position. This position
involves getting the knees bent and down low as well as
getting the ball to the strong side of the body. This gives
our offensive player the choice of passing, dribbling or
shooting.

The key to this is getting the ball to the strong side of
the body. This makes it easier for the player to go right
up with a shot if they are open. If the offensive player
keeps the ball in the middle of their body, they then have
to move the ball to the side, which will cost us valuable
time. So focus on the triple threat position and getting 
the ball to the side. Since we need the ball there anyway
in order for a correct shot with our elbow straight, we
should just put the ball there in the first place. 

-------------------------------------------------------------
Coaching Tip of the Month - Break Up Drills 

We all have experienced times when our players just don't
seem to be paying attention. The younger the players, the
more often this will happen.

What I have found to be effective is to break up drills
into small time frames, usually 8 - 10 minutes. Any more
than this and the players start losing their concentration.
I may even go back to the same drill later in practice, but
after 10 minutes I know they need a change. I also look at
drills to get the most players involved at once. That limits
the players who are waiting in line. A player that is
participating in a drill is more focused than one who is
just standing there. You can also run drills at different
ends of the court to keep your players involved.

-------------------------------------------------------
Good Luck to everyone!
------------------------------------------------------------

Stephen Pavlovic

Send any questions, comments, or ideas to me at:
Steve@scoremorehoops.com

------------------------------------------------------------
Copyright 2004 by Stephen Pavlovic. All rights Reserved.
------------------------------------------------------------


          September 2004


------------------------------------------------------------
Coach Steve Pavlovic's Coaching Basketball Newsletter

"A newsletter of proven tips for youth basketball coaches"

08/31/2004 ** September 2004 Issue ** 
Steve Pavlovic, Editor, Steve@scoremorehoops.com
------------------------------------------------------------
By subscription only! Welcome to the current issue of
"Coach Steve Pavlovic's Coaching Basketball Newsletter".
You are receiving this newsletter because you
requested a subscription. Unsubscribe instructions
are at the end of this newsletter.

** Feel free to forward this ezine to any coaches that you
think this would benefit, or direct them to:
www.scoremorehoops.com
so that they can sign up for this newsletter! ** 

Welcome to all new subscribers! This ezine is published 
monthly, usually sent out on the first of each month. 

------------------------------------------------------------
IN THIS ISSUE
------------------------------------------------------------

=> Sponsorship Notice 
=> Feature Article - Olympic Basketball 
=> Offense - Making Moves to Get Open 
=> Defense - Take Short Quick Steps 
=> Shooting - Don't Turn the Shoulders 
=> Coaching Tip of the Month - Get Your Supplies Ready Now 
=> Subscribe/Unsubscribe information

------------------------------------------------------------
SPONSORSHIP NOTICE
------------------------------------------------------------
My new "Advanced Basketball Techniques" ebook is ready!!!

Also, my new website is up and running! I will be updating
the archives over the next few weeks, as well as adding a
page of related links. Check it out at:

www.scoremorehoops.com

Let me know what you think! 

------------------------------------------------------------
FEATURE ARTICLE, Olympic Basketball 
by Steve Pavlovic
------------------------------------------------------------
As I'm sure you know by now, the men's Olympic team ended
up with the bronze medal. For most countries that would be OK,
but not for how long the U.S. has dominated. What happened?
Well, there are some valid reasons, including lack of practice
time together, and a different style of play in the international
game. But there are also some areas that failed the U.S. that
can also be used as lessons for our youth teams!

The first area is complacency. We have been so used to
beating all these other countries that it is a shock that
they have now caught up to us. The other countries know what
an accomplishment it is to beat the U.S., so they try even
harder. I have seen this at the youth level also. Once a
team beats another team a few times, they think they have
the game won. I will hear in the locker room, "This is an
easy team to beat". I always include in my pre-game talk
when we are playing a team that we have previously beaten
that any team is capable of beating anyone. I stress to my
players never to take an opponent for granted!

The next area is defense. The international teams seemed to
play much better defense on the perimeter and in the post.
For our NBA players, let's face it, there is not a lot of
defense being played. Our players were not prepared to
shoot with one or more hands in their face and being
challenged. As far as our U.S. team, we didn't play very
good defense either. Our team needed to challenge the other
team's shooters. Hey, some of those guys are pretty darn good!
And that's exactly what I will stress to my team. Defense is
an important part of the game. If you want to win games, it is
your defense that will do it for you. Learn the basics of
defense and make sure you use it during the game. It will
help make for a successful season! 

------------------------------------------------------------
Offense - Making Moves to Get Open 

As players get older, they learn to anticipate where your
offense is going to pass the ball. That makes it a little
more difficult to get the ball to where you want. Your players
can no longer just stand there and receive a pass. They must
make a move to get themselves open.

Just what kind of moves must they make? Well, they can start
in close to the lane, then make a break up the lane and out
toward the sideline to get open. If the defender stays with
them, they can look at making a quick back door cut, which
is cutting behind the defender. Or they can make a simple V
cut. This involves a player going in toward the lane on an
angle, then breaking back out toward the ball side. This
will give you the needed space and time to receive a pass, as
the V shape is designed to do.

I like to work on these cuts during practice. It helps our
defenders work on their man-to-man defense, as well as our
offense to get used to being overplayed. I like to set up a
simple drill where I have a guard at the top of the key and
a wing who is being defended. The wing must break to get open
using any of the above methods and the guard must get him a
good pass. This helps get our guards used to the moves that
our wings will be performing and they can both get their
timing down. 


------------------------------------------------------------
Defense - Take Short Quick Steps

As I get my team back into the groove of a new season, I
will emphasize about not taking large steps on defense. This
gets the body over extended and unable to stop quickly. That
can allow the offensive player to get by us.

I teach my players to take short, quick steps. I don't want
them to be banging their left foot and right foot together as
they shuffle. If they do, that means they are not staying low.
They are allowing their body to go down and up, which will
make it hard to change directions. I instruct them to not
let the feet come together. Working on this in practice and
during defensive drills will help make your team better at
this come game time. Short and quick steps will make them a
great defender! 

------------------------------------------------------------
Shooting - Don't Turn the Shoulders

Younger players always seem to want to get their power for
shooting by turning their shoulders. I have worked with a number
of them over the summer, and they all started with this same
problem! Try as I might I couldn't convince them that this
turning was actually causing them to miss many shots. They
would constantly miss to the left side, as they would turn
across their body.

So I finally came up with a way to stop it. I put them 
with their back against the wall, and had them simulate a shot.
This stopped them from turning, as there was no place to turn.
They then had to bend their knees and keep their shoulders
squared to the basket, just as I wanted them to do. Once they
were comfortable doing this, I took them back out to the basket.
Their shooting greatly improved! 

-------------------------------------------------------------
Coaching Tip of the Month - Get Your Supplies Ready Now 

As the season is getting closer, think about what equipment
you are going to need. Whether it is scorebooks, balls, 
erasable board, or a medical kit, get them now so you don't
have to rush at the last minute.

There are also some optional things you might want like a
hand pump and needle to pump up balls or maybe water bottles
for the team. Some of this equipment will be furnished to you
by the program you are participating in, but other things are 
nice to have that your program probably can't afford. Take the
time now to make a list of everything you would want while 
you are not under the gun! 

------------------------------------------------------------
Good Luck to everyone!
------------------------------------------------------------

Stephen Pavlovic

Send any questions, comments, or ideas to me at:
Steve@scoremorehoops.com

------------------------------------------------------------
Copyright 2004 by Stephen Pavlovic. All rights Reserved.
------------------------------------------------------------
   


    October 2004

 ------------------------------------------------------------   

Coach Steve Pavlovic's Coaching Basketball Newsletter
 
 "A newsletter of proven tips for youth basketball coaches"
 
09/30/2004           ** October 2004 Issue **       
Steve Pavlovic, Editor, Steve@scoremorehoops.com
------------------------------------------------------------
By subscription only! Welcome to the current issue of
"Coach Steve Pavlovic's Coaching Basketball Newsletter".
You are receiving this newsletter because you
requested a subscription. Unsubscribe instructions
are at the end of this newsletter.
 
** Feel free to forward this ezine to any coaches that you
   think this would benefit, or direct them to:
             www.scoremorehoops.com
   so that they can sign up for this newsletter! **
 
Welcome to all new subscribers! This ezine is published
monthly, usually sent out on the first of each month. 
 
------------------------------------------------------------
IN THIS ISSUE
------------------------------------------------------------
 
=>  Sponsorship Notice
=>  Feature Article - Get Your Administrative Duties Done
=>  Rebounding - Keep the Ball High   
=>  Dribbling - Work on the Weak Hand
=>  Shooting - Go Straight Up   
=>  Coaching Tip of the Month - Know Your Program   
=>  Subscribe/Unsubscribe information
 
------------------------------------------------------------
SPONSORSHIP NOTICE
------------------------------------------------------------
 NEW REVOLUTIONARY basketball shooting practice device!
 
 
The shootAndstar  rebounder costs under $200 and allows a shooter to shoot from anywhere on the court and both made and missed shots are quickly returned to the shooter!
 
 
By positioning the shootAndstar  rebounder in 3 different positions, a user can virtually practice every shot from 8 foot on out  to and beyond the 3 point line.  This includes shots from the top of the key to both corners of the court.  You can choose the areas of the court where you want to concentrate your shooting practice.  Moving the shootAndstar  rebounder  can be done by one person and is quick and easy. Practicing by yourself using the shootAndstar  rebounder, you can get 3 to 4 times as many shots attempted as you normally would in a workout.  
 
 
You only have to attach the apparatus to the backboard one time.  When not in use, it compactly stores on the backboard, out of the way, for future use.  Also, you can leave the net up behind the backboard where it hangs out of the way and prevents the ball from rolling off the court.
 
 
To order and to find more information, pictures and videos of the shootAndstar  rebounder- go to their website-  www.shootAndstar.com
           
------------------------------------------------------------
FEATURE ARTICLE, Get Your Administrative Duties Done 
  by Steve Pavlovic
------------------------------------------------------------
 
  Fall is here, so the start of basketball practice is just
around the corner! It seems like everything hits at once, so
I like to try to get ready early for the sesaon. These are
some things I think all coaches can do.
 
  The first thing is your team goals and your team rules.
You know what you want to do, so why not get them set and
ready now? Your rules probably don't change much from year
to year. But it doesn't hurt to review them and update them
as needed. The goals for your team might change, depending
on what age level you are on. You can get this set based on
your past experience.
 
  Based on your age group, you can also start planning what
skills you will focus on. I like to group them by ball
handling, shooting, defense, etc. Then I can write down
what types of drills I want to use. So when I go to make
up my practice schedule, I can just plug in drills. It makes
that part go much faster.
 
  I will also get together my information to pass out to
parents. This will include info on how fans should behave,
which has become more and more of a problem in youth sports.
I like to let the parents know right up front that neither
myself or our school program will put up with unruly fans.
I also let the parents know my philosophy, what we will focus
on this year, and any conference, practice or tournament
schedules that I have. The more info I can pass on to the
parents early, the more prepared they can be. It doesn't come
as a surprise to them or the players.
 
 Depending on your program, I am sure there are other things
you can do ahead of time. Do these things now, so you don't
start out behind schedule. Staying ahead of the game makes
your duties as coach a little less stressful. 
 
-------------------------------------------------------------
Rebounding - Keep the Ball High 
 
  I've seen it happen at all levels - a shot is rebounded,
the rebounder brings the ball down low, and the ball gets
stripped from them. What can you teach the rebounder so that
won't continue to happen?
 
  The main idea is to keep the ball high. When your players
jump for a rebound, after blocking out of course, they are to
extend their arms to get the ball. What you need to stress is
that when they grab the ball, they must keep it up high! If not,
the ball becomes an easy target to be stolen.
 
  One drill I like to do is called the Tip Drill. I set my team
in a single file line facing the basket, off to one side of
the rim. They then get the ball over their head and throw it
off the backboard with both hands. The player behind them
must have his arms up, extend and jump for the rebound, then
keeping the ball up high, put the ball off of the backboard for
the next player. The line keep moving up and players that
finish go to the back of the line for their next attempt. It
should be a fast moving drill. Players need to get their arms
up high and keep them there. I will have the player next in
line already getting their arms up to remind them. We will
usually try to get to a certain number with no dropped balls,
20-30 at the beginning of the season, then up to 50+ depending
on the age group. If any coach sees the ball not kept high,
it is counted as a dropped ball and the count starts over.
Players learn very quick to keep it high!
 
----------------------------------------------------------
Dribbling - Work on the Weak Hand
 
  Whether it is the beginning of the season or the end, I
still stress working on the weak hand. I want my players to
be able to handle the ball with both hands equally well. I
tell them I don't want the defender to know whether you are
right handed or left handed, so do both well.
 
  When working on the weak hand, I will set up simple
dribbling drills with no defenders. I used to have defenders,
figuring that they would face them during a game. But I found
that if it's done too early in the process, the dribblers
would get frustrated from either losing the ball or having
it stolen. So by taking out the defender until your players
have had sufficient work in this area, I find that the
players can focus on the dribble and improve faster. They are
then much more prepared when a defender is added to the drill. 
         
------------------------------------------------------------
Shooting - Go Straight Up
 
  Players sometimes rush so fast to shoot, that their bodies
are not completely stopped. They are still moving forward,
which usually throws off the shot. The ball usually hits hard
and bounces long.
 
  I like to take my teams and show them how to "jump stop".
This technique shows them how to come to a complete stop for
a split second, then to go up for the shot. The result is
that the player will go straight up for the shot, which is
how they are planning for it to go. The shot will have a much
better chance of going in, and the player has control over
their body so they can move into rebounding position.
      
-------------------------------------------------------------
Coaching Tip of the Month - Know Your Program 
 
  An important aspect for you as a coach is to know what
your program is all about. If it is a recreational league,
know what kind of playing rules there are and what is
expected of you. If it's a competitive program, know
your rules as well as if pressing is allowed, how long the
quarters are, playing time requirements and things like
that.
 
  If you haven't coached at this level before, talk to the
program director or another coach who has done this before.
There is nothing worse than being surprised by some obscure
rule in the first game or two. Find out how other coaches
run things so you will have something to go by. Then you
can make changes to suit your team and your style. As long
as they are within the rules of your league, of course.
 
  This will help you prepare for the upcoming season. And as
I said before, being prepared will cause less stress for you
as the coach!
    
------------------------------------------------------------
Good Luck to everyone!
------------------------------------------------------------
 
Stephen Pavlovic
 
Send any questions, comments, or ideas to me at:
  Steve@scoremorehoops.com
 
------------------------------------------------------------
Copyright 2004 by Stephen Pavlovic.  All rights Reserved.
------------------------------------------------------------

    November 2004


------------------------------------------------------------
Coach Steve Pavlovic's Coaching Basketball Newsletter

"A newsletter of proven tips for youth basketball coaches"

10/31/2004 ** November 2004 Issue ** 
Steve Pavlovic, Editor, Steve@scoremorehoops.com
------------------------------------------------------------
By subscription only! Welcome to the current issue of
"Coach Steve Pavlovic's Coaching Basketball Newsletter".
You are receiving this newsletter because you
requested a subscription. Unsubscribe instructions
are at the end of this newsletter.

** Feel free to forward this ezine to any coaches that you
think this would benefit, or direct them to:
www.scoremorehoops.com
so that they can sign up for this newsletter! ** 

Welcome to all new subscribers! This ezine is published 
monthly, usually sent out on the first of each month. 

------------------------------------------------------------
IN THIS ISSUE
------------------------------------------------------------

=> Sponsorship Notice 
=> Feature Article - How to Handle a New Player 
=> Defense - Do Stretching Exercises 
=> Passing - Step Around the Defender 
=> Shooting - Envision a Good Shot 
=> Coaching Tip of the Month - Build on the Positive 
=> Subscribe/Unsubscribe information

------------------------------------------------------------
SPONSORSHIP NOTICE
------------------------------------------------------------
My new "Advanced Basketball Techniques" ebook is ready!!!

Also, my new website is up and running! I will be updating
the archives over the next few weeks, as well as adding a
page of related links. Check it out at:

www.scoremorehoops.com

Let me know what you think! 

------------------------------------------------------------
FEATURE ARTICLE, How to Handle a New Player 
by Steve Pavlovic
------------------------------------------------------------

If you are back again coaching the same group of players,
it is quite likely that a few of them were not on the team
last year. They might have basketball experience or they
might not. How do you go about getting ready for the season?

The key is to make the new players feel accepted right
from the start. Introduce them to the entire team, and make
sure your current players are encouraging the new players.
I tell my teams that all of the players on a team are
important. All players make a contribution to our team and
our sucess.

I will also pay close attention to these players the first
few practices to see what areas they are strong and weak in.
I will then assign an assistant coach to work with them on
the weak points in order to get them up to speed. If ball-
handling is a problem, I will show them drills to do on their
own. By doing these things, I am hoping to get their skills
up to the returning players. The beginning of the season
gives me that opportunity, before I need to show them offenses
and other plays.

So start off a new player in the right direction. You never
know when that player will start to blossom and really
contribute to your team's success!

-------------------------------------------------------------
Defense - Do Stretching Exercises 

I like to go through a lot of defensive drills, especially
at the beginning of the season. But before we do any of them,
we always make sure that we stretch.

Why is stretching important? Because we want to avoid
injury. Going full blast with tight muscles, instead of
loosening them with our stretching, is an accident waiting
to happen. A pulled muscle is not what we want for any of
our players, especially when we are trying to get them
into basketball condition.

So take a few minutes at the beginning of practice to
stretch. Do some leg stretches, butterfly, even some
jumping jacks, etc. Work all of the major muscle groups, 
then put your team through their drills. 

----------------------------------------------------------
Passing - Step Around the Defender

If you are closely guarded, you can't pass through a 
defender. I say that many times to my team. But just how do
you get the ball to an open teammate if you have a defender
all over you?

When we are trying to get away from a defender, we know we
can use the pivot. Once that pivot foot is established, we
can't change that until we get rid of the ball. But to get a
pass off, we can keep that pivot foot down, and use our other
leg to "step around" the defender. This means that if we are
trying to pass to the right side, and we have our right foot
as our pivot foot, we would step with the left foot and get 
that leg past the defender. This puts our body between the
ball and the defender and gives us just enough space to get
off a pass. If this is done right, the defender will have
to reach in to get the ball. Foul on them!

This move can be used any time a defender is right on you.
If you haven't established a pivot foot yet, like when you
first receive a pass, you can step around with either foot
to get to an open teammate. Demonstrate this skill to your
players and work on it in practice. This is a valuable skill
as players get older. 

------------------------------------------------------------
Shooting - Envision a Good Shot

To get my players used to the right shooting technique, I
will have them imagine that they are shooting the perfect
shot with the perfect form. This mental image will help them
put their body in the correct position to go up for a shot.

This technique is very helpful when shooting free throws.
I have my players think about making the perfect shot right
before they shoot a free throw. Then they can apply how they
look in their mental image to the actual shot.

-------------------------------------------------------------
Coaching Tip of the Month - Build on the Positive 

I have found over the years that a positive approach works
the best in bringing out the best in an athlete. That doesn't
mean I don't raise my voice when the same drill is done wrong
numerous times in a row. But I more often try to compliment
the good and correct the mistakes in a calm manner.

Being negative and only pointing out a player's mistakes
will only make that player more timid. They are then afraid
of making a mistake, and won't take a chance when an
opportunity arises. As long as I know that a player is trying,
and not making a mistake because they are goofing around, I
will take my time and explain what I want done.

So especially early on in the season, whether we are
winning or losing, I will find positive things to say
about our performance. I will also tell what we as a team
need to work on. Staying positive I have found keeps the
players loose and anxious to improve their skills. 

------------------------------------------------------------
Good Luck to everyone!
------------------------------------------------------------

Stephen Pavlovic

Send any questions, comments, or ideas to me at:
Steve@scoremorehoops.com

------------------------------------------------------------
Copyright 2004 by Stephen Pavlovic. All rights Reserved.
------------------------------------------------------------


   December 2004


------------------------------------------------------------
Coach Steve Pavlovic's Coaching Basketball Newsletter

"A newsletter of proven tips for youth basketball coaches"

11/30/2004 ** December 2004 Issue ** 
Steve Pavlovic, Editor, Steve@scoremorehoops.com
------------------------------------------------------------
By subscription only! Welcome to the current issue of
"Coach Steve Pavlovic's Coaching Basketball Newsletter".
You are receiving this newsletter because you
requested a subscription. Unsubscribe instructions
are at the end of this newsletter.

** Feel free to forward this ezine to any coaches that you
think this would benefit, or direct them to:
www.scoremorehoops.com
so that they can sign up for this newsletter! ** 

Welcome to all new subscribers! This ezine is published 
monthly, usually sent out on the first of each month. 

------------------------------------------------------------
IN THIS ISSUE
------------------------------------------------------------

=> Sponsorship Notice 
=> Feature Article - Set Realistic Goals for Your Team 
=> Dribbling - Push Ball on the Break 
=> Rebounding - Find a Guard 
=> Shooting - Work on Triple Threat Position 
=> Coaching Tip of the Month - Break Down Your Offense 
=> Subscribe/Unsubscribe information

------------------------------------------------------------
SPONSORSHIP NOTICE
------------------------------------------------------------
Get your team ready for the upcoming season! Check out all
of my basketball info at: 

www.scoremorehoops.com


------------------------------------------------------------
FEATURE ARTICLE, Set Realistic Goals for Your Team 
by Steve Pavlovic
------------------------------------------------------------
I always believe in setting goals with my teams. It gives
them something to measure up to and play for. But it is
important to make the goals realistic. Let me explain.

If this is your first year coaching a particular group of
players, you want to wait to set goals until you see what you
have. You don't want to have a struggling group of players
and set goals like winning the conference and winning every'
tournament that we enter. That is not only putting pressure
on the players, but if the goal is not attainable, it can
make them feel like a failure at the end. We don't want the
players to be discouraged. We want them to continue to
improve and get better. Setting goals such as improving team
shooting, or getting a certain number of defensive rebounds
would be better. 

Now if you have a team that you have previously coached and
you know what they are capable of, then you can set higher
goals. Then a conference championship goal might be realistic.

We want the players to strive to attain the goals. We don't
want to make it too easy, but we don't want to make it 
completely out of reach either. We want them to improve and
put forth a good effort on the court. Then when they achieve
the goals that have been set, they can feel satisfied and
proud of their accomplishment.

-------------------------------------------------------------
Dribbling - Push Ball on the Break 

I like to have my teams push the ball up the court. I want
them to be under control, but I like to catch the opponent
by surprise. I do this a lot because my teams always seem
to be smaller than our opponent. So I want to take advantage
of our speed.

To move the ball quickly down the court, your guards can't
dribble the ball next to their body. They must push the ball
out in front of themselves. They can then run a little quicker
and keep up with the ball, yet keep it under control as they
look for a pass, layup, or set up our offense if the break
isn't there. This is done in the open court. As a player
gets closer to a defender, then the ball needs to be
brought back in closer to the body for protection. 

----------------------------------------------------------
Rebounding - Find a Guard

Whether we are starting a fast break or just trying to get 
into our offense, I want the ball in our point guard's hand.
So when we get a defensive rebound, I want one or both of
my guards to break out at the free throw line extended and
get a hand up so our rebounder can get them a pass.

Once the ball is in the guard's hands, they can look up and
see what is going on. If the numbers are in our favor, I want
the ball pushed up the court. If not, the guard will set up
our offense. Either way, my point guard is like another coach
on the floor, and I let them make more decisions as they
get older and really start to understand the complete game.
So I want the ball in their hands as soon as possible. 

------------------------------------------------------------
Shooting - Work on Triple Threat Position

When a player receives a pass, they need to be in a position
to either pass, dribble, or shoot. If they aren't, they are
not a threat to the defense. The offensive team needs to be a
threat in order to make the defense move and react. 

The easiest way I have found to do this is to receive the
pass and automatically get into the triple threat position.
We do this by squaring up to the basket and getting the ball
off to the side of our body where we would shoot. Then we can
be prepared to be an offensive threat.

I also work on getting into the triple threat position so
that we can get a shot off quickly. When one of my players
receives a pass, I want them to immediately get ready for a
possible shot. By doing this, we can get off a good shot
before the defense can react. 


-------------------------------------------------------------
Coaching Tip of the Month - Break Down Your Offense 

As we install a new offense, players can sometimes get
confused. As a coach, I know what I want them to do, but
moving players in different directions can be difficult
for players to grasp.

I have found the best way to install a new offense is to
break it down into small steps. I like to create drills
that will take a part of the offense and break it down. Once
the players have these drills mastered, then I will put it
all together and install the new offense.


------------------------------------------------------------
Have a great Holiday Season!
------------------------------------------------------------

Stephen Pavlovic

Send any questions, comments, or ideas to me at:
Steve@scoremorehoops.com

------------------------------------------------------------
Copyright 2004 by Stephen Pavlovic. All rights Reserved.
------------------------------------------------------------
   


 

 

 

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