Never Too Late Basketball's Tips & Tales

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“Ready to Shoot”

Posted by Steve Bzomowski on January 4, 2007

(This is the sort of thing that college players work on all the time.) When considering getting a shot off (without getting it blocked), shooters often think about (and ask me about) jumping over defenders, a “quick release” and other difficult-to-achieve, nebulous approaches. True, one hopes to be unfettered when shooting; you want separation – space – between you and the defender. However, the best way to accomplish this is to be ready to shoot, ready to shoot a quality shot. This is accomplished by being as far into the process of catching-and-shooting as is possible. I remember being almost reduced to tears watching Bird just catch and flick from the corner against Arkansas in the NCAA Regional Final in 1979. His hands were already up for the catch, his knees were bent for the jump, and he was squared to the hoop for accuracy. That guy was ready to shoot, and you can be too, if you prepare to shoot before you catch the ball. Once again: hands up (palms showing), knees bent so you don’t have to take the time to do that after catching, and pivot to square up while catching so you can eliminate time and motion on your shot. Hopefully, the tears shed watching you will be tears of admiration, as well.

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