(Rental)-Nick Nurse: The Spread Offense for Basketball
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Nick Nurse guided the Toronto Raptors to the 2019 NBA title and earned the 2020 NBA Coach of the Year. Much of his team’s successes are based on his offensive philosophy which is on display in this video. With offensive concepts from the NBA filtering down to the high school level, Nurse makes these concepts easy to understand so you can utilize them at your level.
Nurse’s version of the 4-Out, 1-In offense is a little different than the traditional set. The idea is designed to spread the floor to create opportunities to drive to the basket. Perimeter shooters set up around the three-point line and a fifth player is in the “dunker spot.”
The idea is simply to create space and attack the paint. He discusses this in-depth as well as pointing out how points per possession increase when the ball gets into the lane.
Regardless of how the ball is obtained, one of the keys for Nurse’s offense is attacking in transition. The point guard pushes the ball up the floor while the wings run to the corners. You will also see how Nurse attacks the paint using Pitch with a trailer. The point guard works a handoff with the trailer who looks to go to the rim.
Nurse also shows you how to use the “Dunker.” The first post down the floor runs to the rim looking for the easy layup. If he doesn’t get the layup, he fills one of two spots on the floor looking for a dump off pass.
Pick & Roll and Counters
Like most NBA teams, the Raptors and Nurse use the pick and roll as part of their offense. Nurse likes to use Swing, Drag, and Double Drag in transition to generate drives to the basket. There are also counters that Nurse teaches. One is Pindown where the trailer has gotten too far ahead of the point guard. The wing opposite the ball receives a pindown screen. The cutter can either get a catch-and-shoot three-pointer or curl into the paint.
Coach Nurse’s presentation makes what appears to be a complex NBA offensive system and makes it understandable and usable for any coach at any level.