(Rental)-Get To The Altar Building Your Help & Recover Defensive System
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“Get to the Altar” – Building Your Help & Recover Defensive System
Avery Johnson made an NBA career out of being one of the best defensive point guards of his time. He has taken that same mentality in his coaching career and has served as the head coach of the Dallas Mavericks, Brooklyn Nets, and most recently the University of Alabama. In this video, Johnson discusses playing great help defense regardless of players’ skill level or coaching level. You will learn about “getting to the altar” and hear the Johnson’s famous quote, “If you’re not in help position, you’re in the wrong position.”
Basic Help Defense
To understand help defense, Johnson explains the “altar” which is a player on help defense in the middle of the paint. A player will always be in the altar. If the middle player leaves to cut off the baseline, a player will replace him. The defense remains active at all times taking away penetration and forcing jump shots when it correctly rotates.
Coach Johnson addresses the basics of help defense working from a base 4-Out 1-In set covering:
- Close outs
- Defending cuts
- Screen defender’s position
- Weak side defender roles
- Passes that must be taken away
- Direction to force the ball handler
- How to deal with a pass made to a screener after they roll to the basket
Pick & Roll Situations & Coverages
Because teams now face stretch 4s and 5s, players must be able to defend the roll and the shot off the screen. Players learn how to defend various pick and roll situations all while being able to defend the altar. Johnson shows players how to help and recover.
Teams must be able to adjust and defend a strong post player in man-to-man defense. To guard that type of player, Johnson covers the following:
- How the defender denies the post
- How to deal with teams that have great shooters in addition to the strong post
- How to double the post and rotate out of it
Coach Johnson uses on-court demonstrations to review rotations within your help defense. He will show you certain scenarios including trapping in different areas of the floor. Cutters are always covered and Johnson preaches more of a gap concept to make sure middle penetration is taken away. Rotations are geared toward making teams shoot jump shots.
Johnson covers a number of scenarios such as defending floppy action, ball pressure, staggered screens, and much more. This is a great video for any coach looking to improve his team’s help defense.