1.4.1 Defending dribble hand offs
A dribble hand off is an exchange between a person with the ball and a person running past them. It is a dynamic move, with the dribbler stopping and then immediately handing the ball to a person running past.
1 dribbles toward 2, who cuts past, grabs the ball and immediately dribbles.
For convenience, in the following diagrams 1 is not shown dribbling, however 1 would normally be on the move, which does make defending more complex.
x2 may move directly into the path of 2. If 2 continues the cut then x2 keeps between 2 and 1, making the hand off ineffective.
Alternatively, 2 may opt to cut back door toward the basket, and 2 moves to defend that.
2 may try to get close to 1 before performing the back cut (so that x2 gets “stuck” on 1). In this event, x1 could defend the back cut and x2 could relocate to defend 1.
The defenders may double team 2 as they start their dribble. x1 moves to get directly into the path of 2 and x2 “trails” and moves with 2.
x1 should not move position until 1 has stopped their dribble and picked the ball up. If x1 moves too early ( when 1 still has a live dribble ),1 could simply turn to dribble to the basket.
Similar to “double”, x1 can “show” by getting into the path of 2 and then recovering to defend 1. This will stop 2 from turning the corner and attacking the key and gives 2 time to recover and defend 2.
Particularly if the hand off is from one guard to another guard, the defenders may switch, with x1 moving to defend 2 (who now has the ball) and x2 moving to defend 1.
The two defenders should “come together” as they switch, to ensure that there is no gap where the dribbler could penetrate after x2 has stopped defending the ball and before x1 is defending the ball.
Some teams add a screen to the hand-off action, which is designed to stop whichever defender is going to defend the new ball handler from getting in position to do so.
If the defenders switch to defend the hand-off, x4 would then need to establish a position to screen x1.
x4 may “jam” into the screen so that x2 can go “under”. x1 should “show” and then recover to 1, to ensure that 2 cannot take an easy shot as they come off the hand off.
x4 can switch onto 2 and x2 rotates across to defend the screener (4). x1 may “show” and then recover to defend 1.
This tactic may be used if the shot clock is low or if x4 is not particularly mismatched in their defending on the perimeter.