“Offense wins games, Defense wins CHAMPIONSHIPS!” – you’ll hear coaches say that throughout your basketball career, because it’s true. Team success over the course of a season is about consistency and your defense will always be more consistent than your offense if you are willing to put in the work to master the defensive fundamentals and give your maximum effort each time you step onto the court.
Offensively your shot may be ‘off’ or you may just be having ‘one of those days’ where nothing seems to fall for you on offense. It happens to all players, all the time. No player in the history of the game has made every shot they’ve taken in a game – at best, a truly elite player may shoot at or close to 60% from the floor for the duration of a season. That means even the best players in the world are going to miss at least 4 times out of every 10 shots they take. For most players the percentages are far lower than that, resulting in more than half of all the shots taken will be missed.
Shooting is a fine motor skill that has so many different variables in determining success, the percentages will never fully work in your favour if you’re relying on making every single shot to be successful.
So how can you, or your coach, be more consistent with determining the outcome of games? If you can’t rely on your shooting to deliver every game, what can you rely on each and every time?
Defense is more of a physically objective skill that doesn’t rely on fine motor skills to be successful. If you have developed correct technique and understand how to play defense, then your effort and desire to stop the other team from doing what they want to do will become the most important aspect of deciding which side of the win/loss column you and your team will sit at the end of the season.
Use this section of tips, drills and features to improve your defensive fundamentals and overall understanding, then take it onto the court and make shutting down whomever you come up against your main priority. Coaches will always find court time for defensive specialists.[divider]