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Teach young players a basic bounce pass

By Keith Miniscalco and Greg Kot

Bounce Pass

The bounce pass is especially useful for smaller players in game situations. Rather than throw a pass around or over the long arms of taller players, the smaller player can use a bounce pass to reach the target. It’s much easier to throw a pass underneath those big trees clogging the lane than to throw over them.

The starting position for the bounce pass is to hold the ball at chest level with both hands. Knees should be slightly bent and feet should be shoulder-width apart (see figure 3.2a). To complete the pass, the passer should step with the lead foot, or non-pivot foot, and pass the ball to a partner with a popping action or snap, finishing with hands out, thumbs pointing in and down (see figure 3.2b). The basketball should hit the floor about two-thirds to three-quarters of the distance from the passer. The ball should arrive at the midsection or waist of the teammate.

Again, speed counts. The bounce pass should skip into the receiver’s hands. Many passers tend to start the bounce too high, at their chin, and let the ball drop to the floor. Like the chest pass, the bounce pass should have some zing to it: It should hit the floor and pop into the receiver’s hands. Remind your players to make it pop, not plop.


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