This is often used to create a “last shot” opportunity, with 1 unlikely to get a lay-up, but attempting to penetrate to the top of the key for a shot.

It is likely that help will come to stop any penetration, in which case the offence should be ready to pass to their open team mate. This is most effective if 2 and 3 are able to shoot from the perimeter.

Another isolation alignment is to “clear out” one side of the court. Here, 2 attempts to drive and get an open shot.

Players on the weakside, should be prepared to move to a position to receive a pass.

If one of the weakside defenders (e.g. x1) rotate to help defend the penetration, a pass may be open to their opponent.

In this alignment a similar passing opportunity can be created by one of the post players setting a screen for the perimeter players.

If the defence switch to defend this (e.g. x4 moves to defend 1), it can open a pass into the screener. However, when the isolation play has been run as a “last shot” opportunity, the offensive players must be very conscious of the amount of time remaining.

Many options have been presented here and it is not necessary for a coach to teach all options to their players. Rather they should choose some of the options, depending upon the experience of their players.

Coaches must also keep in mind that “it is not enough to memorize moves, but that players should understand their meaning, master all the decisions, and fundamentals involved, and practice enough to be able to perform each efficiently”.