Purpose: To work on overall team defense and develop the teamwork and communication skills necessary to play great team defense. The competitive situation also helps to develop defensive toughness.
Drill: The Three Stops 4-on-4 Team Defense Drill is competitive in that requires the defense to have three consecutive successful stops.
Divide your squad into teams of 4. Extra players can be placed on teams and they will simply need to rotate in and out.
As shown in the diagram, Team 1 is on defense against Team 2. Team 3 waits at halfcourt. Team 1 will stay on defense until they get three stops in a row.
A “stop” is defined by the coach. This can be simple or it can be challenging. As the coach, you can also change what is successful whenever you do this drill — possibly to prepare for an upcoming opponent. The following are some examples of how you might define a successful stop (of course, there are many more types of stops you can come up with):
- The offense doesn’t score.
- The offense doesn’t score or attempt a layup.
- The offense doesn’t score or get an offensive rebound.
- The offense doesn’t score or get an offensive rebound or get an ‘uncontested’ shot.
- The offense doesn’t score or get an offensive rebound or get a shot attempt in the lane.
The next offensive team waiting (Team C) has their own basketball and is ready to come on the court as soon as the defensive team wins or loses the possession. The next team does not have to wait until the defense is ready — they must only wait until the previous offensive team has cleared the court. By not waiting for the defense to fully reset, this forces the defenders to quickly recover from the previous possession and match up with the new players.
The coach will keep track of the stops. A loss puts the defensive team back to zero.