“Chicago Action” – Pin Down to Dribble Hand Off

In the 2022 ACC Championship, Virginia Tech used the same set to score 11 points against Duke.

“Chicago Action” became popular in the NBA when Coach Fred Hoiberg was leading the Chicago Bulls to the playoffs. The action features a pin down, into a dribble hand off. Now, teams of all levels are using Chicago Action to free up talented perimeter players. In the case of Virginia Tech, Hunter Cattoor scored 9 of his 31 points off of this set play.

Screen to Score

When an opponent focuses a defender on the best perimeter shooter on the team, a simple solution is to turn the shooter, into a screener!  This is especially effective if that player will take pride in being a good screener. In the 2022 Big Ten semi-finals, Jordan Bohannon provided an example of how impactful this can be. On back-to-back possessions, Bohannon got a teammate wide open, and then screened himself open for consecutive three point shots. 

As Bohannon came off of a stagger, his stagger stay connected to him and began to chase over the top. This makes it safe to assume that the defender will not switch on a screen. Bohannon curled and set a terrific screen. The second screener in the stagger recognized this read, and set a screen on his own man. With the primary defender’s unwillingness to help off of Bohannon, Keegan Murray knocked down a wide open 3.

On the next possession, Iowa got an offensive rebound and Bohannon called for “Thumbs Up.” This set play is a diagonal screen-the-screener set. As Bohannon set another tremendous screen, his defender had no choice but to offer help to prevent a layup. This created enough space for Bohannon to sprint to the three point line for an open shot. 

Using a great shooter, as a screener, is not a new concept. Teams have been doing this for years. You will see this often from pure motion offensive teams. This game was just another reminder for coaches, as Iowa scored on multiple key possessions by turning their best shooter into a dangerous screener. Add more of this to your offense and your team will be harder to defend.

The Game’s Newest Assist

In today’s game, shooting is continuing to become an essential skill. This proves to be especially true as you study the highest levels of basketball. As the game has evolved, there are opportunities to find new ways to measure a player’s impact on the game. The traditional statistics tend to leave a gap in today’s game. How can we measure the impact of an elite shooter cutting off of a screen, drawing two defenders, and getting the screener an open layup? This type of impact can now being measured in the form of a CUT ASSIST. 

The video below shows examples of CUT ASSISTS by Klay Thompson and Steph Curry. 

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Using CUT ASSISTS in your team statistics will encourage players to cut hard, find value in creating scoring opportunities for teammates, and it measures the advantage that is created by the gravity of a great shooter. If you run a system that is predicated on cutting, you can take this one step further by giving a CUT ASSIST for any cut that creates an open shot. As you watch basketball, keep an eye out for the game’s newest assist, and watch how frequently a CUT ASSIST is the driving force behind great shots. 

Louisville WBB | Transition Offense

The Louisville women’s basketball team was one of the best transition teams in the Country. They scored 1.108 PPP, which put them among the Nation’s best. Below are a few of the reasons that they were so successful in transition.

  1. Wings sprint and get wide
  2. Rim Runner gets in front of the ball
  3. The point guard advances the ball (on a sprint dribble or pass)
  4. There is skill behind the ball | Trailer can shoot

The combination of the four factors above stretches the defense horizontally, but also vertically. As the wings and rim runner put pressure on the baseline/rim. The trailer puts pressure on the defense to also extend to the three point line. The other key is that Louisville’s guards do a great job of advancing the ball with tempo. They will attack off the dribble, but also show a willingness to throw the ball ahead. Below is a video of some of the different ways that Louisville scores in transition.


Teaching with IF/THEN | Dribble Penetration


One of the keys to playing advantage based basketball is teaching players how to read the defense. A terrific teaching tool for this is using IF/THEN reactions. This simplifies decision making and allows players to easily understand the different reads in a game. On dribble penetration, here are some simple reads, with a video to break it down.

  • IF you don’t see a chest in the lane, THEN go score
  • IF you see a chest in the lane, THEN share the advantage
  • IF the help defender helps up, THEN dump it off

To learn more about advantage based basketball, go follow Dynamic Coaching Tools on Twitter and Instagram.

Instantly Improve Your Offense

Every off-season, coaches spent countless hours researching and studying different ways to improve. Too often, this leads to coaches completely hitting the reset button on their program’s offensive plans. Here are a few simple ways to instantly improve your offense!

  1. Offense starts the moment your team gains possession. TEACH the game this way.

    • When teaching our half court offense, we stress things like spacing, player movement, ball movement, and we provide structure to help players read the game. Why not teach transition the same way?
    • SPACING | There two ways to stretch the defense. Vertically and horizontally. If we can get multiple bodies in front of the ball, we will stretch the defense vertically. If we can get our wings to run wide, we are now stretching the defense horizontally. This should be an instant reaction, the moment your team gains possession of the ball.
    • PLAYER MOVEMENT |  Win the first three steps! If your players will sprint the first three steps, you will get players in front of the ball. When you throw the ball ahead, have you taught your team how and where to space around the ball? Do wings run to the corner and spot up or bounce off of the baseline and lift to free throw line extended? Transition offense includes player movement and should be taught.
    • BALL MOVEMENT | One of our favorite phrases is that we want “two early shares” in transition. If we can get two direct passes in transition, we are likely to have tremendous flow and rhythm on that offensive possession.
    • PROVIDING STRUCTURE | We want to provide spacing rules, simple secondary actions, and then teach our kids to flow seamlessly into our half court offense.
  2. REMOVE “set it up” from your vocabulary

    • One of the most under taught parts of an offensive attack is “FLOW.”
    • Teaching FLOW requires a coach to get creative in practice, abandon static starting points, and requires teaching players HOW TO PLAY.
    • The benefit is that the defense is unable to use the “setup time,” to also get themselves organized.
  3. Create an ATTACKING mentality, with an understanding of IF/THEN responses.

    • The easiest way to create an attacking mentality in your players is to view mistakes in practice as teachable moments.
    • The best teams are confidently attacking, as opposed to having “paralysis by analysis.” In simple terms, they are too busy playing basketball, to stop and think about what is next.
    • If you can create aggressive basketball players, you will see improvements in your offense.
    • To learn more about IF/THEN responses, check out THIS BLOG POST.

Lastly, what does this look like? Here is a video of our team putting these three simple concepts on display.

NCAAW Sweet 16 Project | Best Unused Sets

The 2020 NCAAW Sweet 16 Project highlighted some Xs and Os from the top 16 teams in women’s college basketball. Below are the best unused sets from our video contributors.

CLICK HERE to see more of the Xs and Os from the NCAAW Sweet 16 Project.


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DCT | Chalk Talk | Episode 2

In Episode 2 of the Dynamic Coaching Tools “Chalk Talk” series, we breakdown “14-Chase.” This is a set that we first saw utilized by the Louisville men’s basketball team. We eventually used it with our team, and then it was also ran multiple times throughout the 2018 March Madness. Here is our team running the set.

Now, enjoy Episode 2 of “Chalk Talk,” and then take a look at the counter that can be used against switching teams.

Here is the counter, which is used against teams that are switching screens.

“14 Chase Punch” from @CoachBrotherton leads to an easy bucket for @JadaBball23
The Lady @VillageVikings lead by 14 early in the 3rd quarter! #BeUncommon #weareVILLAGE

— Andy Johnson (@CoachAJohnson) February 23, 2019

If you have questions about this set, please contact us via e-mail at:

DCT | Chalk Talk | Episode 1

We are excited to launch our “CHALK TALK” series, which will feature different basketball Xs and Os, that we believe can help your team. In Episode 1, we are sharing our favorite zone set from this past season. Take a look at “Aggie,” from the Texas A&M women’s basketball team, which we used to score numerous baskets with our program.

Let us know what you think about this set. We look forward to sharing more great X’s and O’s, every time that we get together for some “CHALK TALK.”

Go Follow Us: @DynamicCoaches on Twitter and Instagram

WNBA Finals Preview – Xs and Os

After two highly competitive five game series, we now have our WNBA Finals match-up. Game 1 tips off tonight and features the Seattle Storm against the Washington Mystics. Coaches should be tuning in, as both teams run some tremendous stuff offensively. Below is a breakdown of three sets to look for, which have been highly successful for both teams. Thank you to Ben Dull, from for providing all of the videos for this preview.

Storm – Flex Action (BLOB set)

This BLOB set involves Bird setting a flex screen for Stewart, then receiving a down screen.


Storm – “Horns Down”

The Storm have different Horns looks, but this ball screen that flows into a down screen is tough to guard in transition.

Storm – Empty side / Two Man Action

The Storm love to include Stewart in a “two man game,” on an empty side. They use DHOs, ball screens, and slips.

Mystics “Stagger Split Rip”

This set shows a double stagger, before a split, into a rip (rescreen) for the back cutter. Great counter to a traditional double stagger!

Mystics – “Zipper 15”

The Mystics use a zipper cut, to trigger this backscreen action with Toliver and Delle Donne. This is just one of the ways that the Mystics use a backscreen to get the basketball inside.

Mystics – “Drag Back STS”

This set uses a drag screen and throw back, to set up the screen-the-screener. Toliver shows a screen for Delle Donne, before she actually receives the screen for an open three.

Two actions that will be critical for both teams to figure out are the two-man game, with Stewart on the empty side. The Storm lead the WNBA in three point shooting, and that action puts the defense in a scramble situation. The Storm must be ready to guard the screening actions involving Toliver and Delle Donne. They use back screens, ball screens, and screen the screener actions to free up both players.

This blog will be re-posted on, with all set plays being diagrammed and available for download in the playbank. Look for this repost before Game 3.

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You can also catch our most recent Dynamic Coaching Tools Podcast by clicking here.

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