Every position in my opinion is in need of development of a mid range game. This isn’t new to anyone as with young players nationwide the ability to get shots from the 15-17 foot range is a very much lost art. Our game is filled with point guards that want to take three point shots and try to get to the rim on as many dribbles as possible.
Point guards at all levels need to understand that they need to do more with less. Meaning get to where you want to get to on as few dribbles as possible. One of the more common ways to score as a point guard is by using screen and roll. Here are some common skill sets to being effective on screen and roll.
- Keep Your Dribble Alive
One of the more common mistakes that a point guard makes is picking up their dribble too soon. This usually leads to turnovers and/or bad possessions. Keep your dribble a live up to the last possible second that you either take a shot or make a play for a teammate. If a play breaks down don’t pick your dribble up, even if you need to dribble through the paint and bring it to the other side.
- Set Your Defender Up
Don’t make it a track meet with your defender. Like any other race you can win and some and lose some. Like I previously stated in the article you have to do more with less. Don’t exert more energy or dribbles than you need to on any given possession. Before you initiate pick and roll take your defender away from the screen and then change direction and bring them back into the screen. It’s your job to make sure they hit the screener and don’t give them room between yourself and the screener to enable them to get through the screen.
- Change Speeds
No good point guard plays at one speed. Beyond taking your defender away from the screen being able to set them up and finish them at a quicker speed is essential for any point guard at any age. Keep your defender on edge at all times, you need to play at different speeds.
To be an effective point guard you need to be able to get in the lane. You need to be able to shift your defender one away (back forth, side to side, up/down). To open up your mid range game on screen and roll you are going to have to get your defender on your hip or backing up. Changing speeds play a big part in your ability to create separation between you and your defender. I think the most important shot that a point guard can make off of pick and roll is the 15-18 foot jumper.
The video above shows side and slot pick and roll mid range shots.