3 on 3 on 3 (And More) With Transition

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Every coach that I know wants his offense to be run in transition. Running 2-on-1, 3-on-2, 3-on-2/2-on-1, 3-on-2-continuous drills are common place. I ran them as well. However, they never served the function that I wanted them to. 3-on-3-on-3, along with its progressions, is a great tool for sharpening your transition game, half court offense and even your defense.

How many times do you get clean 2-on-1 or 3-on-2 breaks? In my experience, not very ofter. It's not that they don't happen, but there are always more defenders coming back to the defensive area. If you don't score on the first thrust, you no longer have those clean 2-on-1 or 3-on-2s. You are now in a transition period where you have to flow smoothly into a transition offense. The traditional drills just don't address that.

I have found that 3-on-3-on-3, not only addresses those issues, but are more game like and most importantly can involve everyone on your team.

The drill has 3 teams, Red, Black and Blue.

Here, we start with Black vs. Blue. There are 3 Blacks, with the ball on the far side of mid-court. There are 2 Blues set up on defense with the 3rd Blue at mid-court.

 3 0n 3 0n 3 with transition1

As play starts, the Black team comes up the floor, in a 3 on 2 situation.

As soon as the ball crosses mid-court, the third Black sprints to the center circle and then runs back to join the Black defense.

You have created a 3 on 2 advantage break which will turn into a 3 on 3 situation.

The Blacks try to take advantage of their advantage break (3 on 2),  but if they cannot, they must transition into some type of transition offense and play 3 on 3.

As they play, I allow only one shot. There are no offensive rebounds. The Black team must score on their first possession. That is just my rule, you can develop your own rules.

 3 0n 3 0n 3 with transition2

Once the 3 on 3 is played a new possession starts. When my teams play, whomever gets the rebound or the ball out of the net, continues up the floor. In other words, if there is a missed shot by Black, whomever gets the rebound keeps the ball and goes up the floor, even if Black get the rebound. If Black scores and Black get the ball out of the net first, Black goes up the floor.

Again, you can develop your own rules

In this illustration, Blue has gotten the ball. Blue now runs up the floor to play against red.

One of the Black players must go to half court for the next defensive possession.

 3 0n 3 0n 3 with transition3

As Blues comes up the floor, the have a 3 on 2 advantage break against Red.

When the ball crosses mid-court, the third Red player must sprint to the center circle and then join the defense.

 3 0n 3 0n 3 with transition4

After Blue's offensive thrust, Red gains possession of the ball and goes up the floor against Black.

One of the Blue players goes to mid-court for the next defensive possession.

 

 3 0n 3 0n 3 with transition5
 The games continues continuously. You can moderate by time or by score. 3 0n 3 0n 3 with transition6 

Depending on your objectives and the number of players you have in your practice, you can vary and adapt this drill to include everyone.

This illustration is 4 on 4 on 4 with an initial 4 on 3 transition

3 0n 3 0n 3 with transition7 
This illustration is for 4 on 4 on 4 with an initial 4 on 2 transition
3 0n 3 0n 3 with transition8 
This is 5 on 5 on 5 with an intial 5 on 3 transition. 3 0n 3 0n 3 with transition9 
This illustration is 5 on 5 on 5 with an initial 5 on 4 transition.  3 0n 3 0n 3 with transition10
Don Kelbick

Coach Don Kelbick has had 27 years of coaching experience, 25 at the college level including 14 years as a head coach and 10 years as a Division I assistant including stops at Hofstra University, Marist College, Keene State College, and Florida International University. In 2 years as a high school coach, his teams produced 6 Division I players and was ranked #1 in Florida 28 out of a possible 34 weeks. In addition to coaching he has scouted for NBA teams, including the Knicks and the Hawks, and served as a general manager in the USBL.

www.donkelbickbasketball.com/