The 13 offensive concepts below came from some clinic notes by Mike Fratello. These are things you may want to consider as you develop your offensive philosophy. Don’t just focus on the big things … remember to consider all areas of offense and how you will handle certain situations. If you can gain a couple of points here and there during the course of a game, it may make a big difference!
Below are Coach Fratello’s 13 Offensive Concepts to Consider:
- Power Offense: An offense designed to get free throws and 3-point plays. It is a must to get the basketball inside. All successful teams do this.
- Triangle Rebounding: How many people do you want to rebound? We want to rebound with two and one-half people. The center always rebounds as does the forward who is not shooting. The shooting forward rebounds only if he is in the lane.
- Transition Offense: How many fast breaks do you want per game? Our goal is 32, and we try to convert 50% of those.
- Turnovers: How many turnovers do you want to commit per game? Our goal is 17 (or less).
- Last Shot Attempt: When do you start the play for the last shot of the game? We go with 6 seconds to give us a chance for an offensive rebound, but not a chance for the other team to score.
- Play-calling: How do you call your plays? Verbally? Do you use signals or sign cards? Do you change play-calling every quarter? By units? (first team runs one set, second team another) It is important to let your team know.
- Last Second Situations: If you are one point down at the end of the game, do you hold it or shoot it quick?
- Fouling: What is your philosophy on fouling in the last few minutes of the game when you are down? Do you foul early or late?
- Who Shoots?: Do you and your players know who you want to take the last shot of the game?
- Jump Balls: You must spend time practicing this. (Check out the Jump Ball Plays section for various jump ball plays you can try).
- Missing Free Throw on Purpose: If you have to miss a free throw on purpose, what do you? A couple things to try: A) Have the 2 low rebounders step in to the middle of the lane. The 2 high rebounders can crash to the outside as those lanes will be open, and B) Have the 2 low rebounders roll to the baseline. As their men try to block them out, the 2 high rebounders can crash down the middle. If the high rebounders are outside the free throw lane, make sure they wait until the ball hits the rim. Also, teach the shooter to shoot it quick, aim short, and fake a rhythm bounce before shooting. But do not just throw the ball hard off the board or rim…shoot it like a normal shot.
- Playsheets or Cards: The game is very complicated now. I keep up by keeping cards in my pocket. The cards list plays by each position for every player, plays by series for all that we have, plays that we haven’t used against the particular team we are playing, and a ‘trick card’ with special plays for situations that we work on. These cards allow me to know what to go to at differenet times in the game. They help when the game is tight and your mind is racing.
- Marker Boards: Do you use a board to diagram things for your players during a timeout? Players remember more of what they see. Coaches must practice using the board so that communication is clear during timeouts. (In case you are in need of a marker board, go to the Hoops U. Basketball Store and check out our selection of Basketball Marker Boards — remember, as an Academy member you can save 10% on all purchases through the Hoops U. Store by using the special Academy Coupon Code).
Mike Fratello (born 1947) is a professional basketball coach who previously coached the Atlanta Hawks, Cleveland Cavaliers, and Memphis Grizzlies of the NBA. His NBA career record sits at 666 wins and 542 losses for a .551 average. His teams have qualified for the playoffs in eleven of his 16 seasons as a head coach. One of the most respected basketball minds despite having never won an NBA championship as a head coach, Fratello ranks 19th on the NBA’s all time win list and 21st in games coached.