Basketball Queensland Clinic – Adam Caporn BA COE Men’s Program

Posted on May 13 2021

Basketball Queensland recently hosted a coach development clinic at the Basketball Australia Under 20 Junior Championship in Mackay, featuring Basketball Australia Centre of Excellence Head Coach Adam Caporn.

Coach Caporn, who is also an assistant coach with the Australian Boomers, presented on concepts in defensive containment and disruption and provided some drills and teaching cues for this important area. Thanks to Basketball Queensland and Mackay Basketball for hosting this excellent development opportunity.

Please see below some notes and key takeaways from the clinic.

Introduction –

  • Important to consistently impact the habits of young players in defensive transition
  • Players need to understand the importance of converting quickly from offence to defence our job as coaches is to establish good habits in this area
  • Teach containment before disruption


  • Protect the rim
  • Slow the ball
  • 3-point close-outs


  • Steal shot clock seconds
  • Delay entries
  • Trap and rotate

Establish clear rules for young players initially

    • Who does what?
    • Importance of sprinting back and making it 5 v 5 as quickly as possible
    • Create a triangle ball-side in defensive transition – basket, ball, down the line
  • Importance of having flexibility of roles at the senior and professional levels – allow players to play to their strengths e.g. Damian Martin to the offensive glass
  • Defining roles (COE Men) –
    • Players 1, 2 3
      • Someone rebound
      • Someone basket
      • Someone to the ball
    • Players 4 and 5
      • Rebound every time
      • Sprint back to protect the basket
    • Prioritise protecting the basket – no use slowing the ball if it can be thrown over the top for an uncontested lay-up
    • “Failure is feedback” – create defensive drills that force decisions and provide ongoing feedback throughout

Drill One – 3 v 3 Get back

  • Coach shot
  • Everyone to glass
  • Player guarding the defender that rebounds must touch baseline to create a momentary 3 v 2 the other way
  • 3rd defender sprints back to get in the contest
  • Emphasis on getting basket covered first
  • Play it one cycle then reset – place emphasis on protecting the basket and establishing 3 v 3 as quickly as possible

Drill Two – 5 v 5 Get back

  • As above
  • Create a momentary 5 v 4
  • Establish triangle ball-side
  • “Sprint to plug, sprint back”

Drill Three – 2 v 2 contain and plug

  • In the full court, establish defender on the ball, defender in plug position
  • Rehearsal mode in back court, work on sprinting from one position to the other
  • Play live to a result in the front court
  • Emphasis on keeping ball in front – “don’t allow an angle where the handler can go anywhere quickly”

Drill Four – 4 v 4 full court shell

  • Working on positioning and containment
  • Rehearsal to start – one dribble advance, pass laterally
  • Defensive adjust positioning – denial down the line, plugger, basket
  • Drill rehearsal speed, then live
  • Importance of sprinting – “don’t slide unless you are on the ball”

Drill Five – 3 v 2 plus 1 full court

  • Three offensive players – ball at foul line, down the line and opposite
  • Two defenders start in drill, third defender on the baseline
  • Drill is live on the dribble, defence covers basket and slows ball
  • Third defender sprints back to make it 3 v 3 as quickly as possible

Drill Six – 3 v 3 disruption

  • In the half court
  • 2 guard front and corner opposite
  • Importance of establishing “captain” (basket) to provide support and confidence of perimeter defenders to be disruptive (denial)
  • Drill shifts in rehearsal, build to live

Drill Seven – 3 v 3 full court disruption

  • 3 v 3 in the full court
  • Third offensive player and defender opposite down court
  • Establish plug
  • Play it up and back
  • Build to 4 v 4 – add down the line offensive player
  • In the disruption, understand that young offensive players will get anxious as the shot clock goes down, use this to advantage defensively

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